Carbon wins Montrose tournament as prelim to season opener
|Jan Jorgensen blasts a two run homer in the sixth inning of the game against Montrose during the Lloyd McMillan Memorial Baseball Tournament in Colorado on Friday. The Indians wanted to get into the championship game against Lakewood High School of the Denver area in the worst way but were thwarted by the Dinos. Carbon went on to win against Lakewood and take the tournament championship on Saturday.|
When the Salt Lake Tribune released it's early season 3A baseball rankings last week some in the state thought that the Carbon Dinos were only ranked number one because they were the defending champions. After all, with only a 3-3 record and a lost at home to the second ranked Park City Miners, they had in their head that this Dino team was not near as good as projected.
But tell that to the three Colorado high school teams that Carbon faced in the Lloyd McMillan Memorial Baseball Tournament this past weekend and they all know how good the Dinos really are.
That's because in a tournament where the home team did everything it could to get into it's own tournaments championship game, the Dinos came out on top of all the Colorado teams, two of which were from the Denver area.
In the first game on Friday the Dinos beat up the Manual High Thunderbolts 6-1. Later in the day they then went on to beat the home team, the Montrose Indians 10-1. Those two wins put them into the championship game against the opposing brackets champion, Lakewood High.
In that game the kids from Carbon County triumphed 15-5.
In the first game, Matt Jewkes pitched the entire contest and the Thunderbolts were only able to get three hits off him.
Manual, located in the Denver Public School System, had not had much preseason action before their trip to the southwestern part of the state as Carbon beat them up with eight hits
"Jewkes had a great game for us," said Herrick.
Neither team scored in the first two innings as they felt each other out for weaknesses. But in the third inning Carbon began to score, and they put runs across the plate in every inning after that.
Jan Jorgensen and Jamal Lewis both had doubles in the contest.
Next up were the Indians, who are often frustrated when they play Carbon in any sport. They do not have a good record against Dino teams and were sure this time would be different, especially since it was their tournament on their campus.
"Montrose really wanted to be in that championship game," said Carbon's head coach Lane Herrick, who is not usually one to complain about officiating. However this time was different.
"The umpiring was pretty bad in that game," he said.
Carbon dominated the first three innings scoring six runs to the oppositions three, but in the fourth inning the Indians knocked out five runs and the Colorado school was finally ahead.
However when the sixth inning came it was time for heroics and this time it came in the form of Jorgensen who hit a two run homer and put the Dinos ahead for good.
Josh Greenwood was the starting pitcher and was the winner, with Grundy coming in for relief in the seventh.
Blake Wilde had a double and Lewis had a triple to go along with Jorgensens homer.
Montrose tried almost everything to tie the game in the seventh, but to no avail. Carbon was on it's way to meet Lakewood on Saturday afternoon.
Lakewood High School, from Jefferson County, the geographical area that surrounds Denver, was the largest of the schools the Dinos faced. With almost 1500 students, the school would be a good sized 4A school in Utah's system. Coming into the game, the Tigers had a 3-1 record.
But the other bracket must have been much weaker as the Dinos dominated the Tigers almost from the beginning of the game. At the end of the first the score was tied one to one.
But by the time the second inning was over, Carbon led 7-1 and never looked over their shoulder once after that. Lakewood did get four runs in the third inning, but Carbon countered with two more to stay well ahead.
In the sixth, Carbon also scored another six runs in the sixth inning, putting the game away for good and avoiding a seventh inning based on the ten run rule.
One of the strengths Carbon has is that it is not just a one or two man team. This time the heroics were turned in by Wilde, who not only pitched the whole game, but also pounded out two home runs in the win.
The other batters on the team got into the act as well. Both Jewkes and Jorgensen also got homers in the game. In addition Jeff Anderson hit two doubles while Jorgensen and Grundy also smacked out two balls.
While the teams Carbon faced at the tournament were no powerhouses, they were very respectable teams, especially Montrose which came into their game with a 4-0 record.
Herrick had been concerned about his team, because against Spanish Fork and Park City it seemed the bats for the team had been asleep. But as he predicted, they woke up against these Colorado opponents.
Another concern he had to have was the errors. Up until the team played Lakewood, errors had seemed to be mounting. In the game against Montrose they had had four, but in the Lakewood game they had settled down and had no errors at all.
On Monday afternoon just at press time for the Sun Advocate the Dinos defeated Lehi 6-1. More on that game in Thursdays issue. On Wednesday they face North Sanpete in Mount Pleasant.
It appears it will be another exciting year in Carbon baseball as the team attempts to defend it championship and head to state once again.