A back-and-forth battle in Ogden, Utah, saw the Grand Junction Rockies' season come to a heartbreaking end.
In the 10th inning of Game 2 of the Pioneer League South Division Playoffs, a fielding error by shortstop Ezequiel Tovar on a two-out hit by Ramon Rodriguez gave Jorbit Vivas the time he needed to reach home, sending the Raptors to the championship game with a 6-5 victory on Monday night.
Grand Junction, which finished the regular season 38-36, couldn't overcome the team that won the division in both halves of the season. The wild extra-inning contest featured six lead changes and four ties.
Pioneer League Most Valuable Player Colin Simpson tied the game at 5-5 in the top of the 9th inning on a double to score Tovar. It was the third time in the game that the Rockies tied the score.
Simpson also accounted for Grand Junction's first run of the game, a sacrifice fly to left field to plate Julio Carreras.
Ogden scored two runs in the bottom frame against Rockies starter Anderson Amarista, who pitched the first 3 1/3 innings, but the Rockies responded quickly. In the top of the second, Carreras' double to left field sent Jack Yalowitz home to tie the game. Carreras led the team with 4 hits and 2 runs scored. Tovar then hit a line drive single to centerfield, scoring Carreras for a 3-2 lead.
The Raptors struck again in the bottom of the fifth, when Andy Pages homered off Blair Calvo.
Grand Junction couldn't produce over the next two innings, but in the top of the eighth, Ronaiker Palma tied the game with an RBI single to score Bladimir Restituyo.
In the bottom frame, Gavin Hollowell gave up a solo home run to Sauryn Lao, once again giving Ogden the advantage going into the final inning.
Simpson provided heroics with Grand Junction down to its final two outs, but Ogden would prove to have some heroics of its own.
Palma reached base on a single in the top of the 10th, but that would prove to be the final hit of the year for the 2019 Rockies. In the bottom frame, Eric Hepple replaced Hollowell and struck out Lao, the first batter he faced. After hitting Vivas with a pitch and giving up a single to Marco Hernandez, he faced runners on the corners and only one out on the board. He struck out Ismael Alcantara to give Grand Junction some hope of escaping the jam.