After enduring two close losses in the regular season, the Carbon High Dinos baseball team was hoping the third meeting with Spanish Fork would be the charm with a win and a ticket to the 3A semifinals.
However Spanish Fork had other ideas. The Dons used a five-run fifth inning to retake the lead from the Dinos on their way to an 8-4 victory in the 3A quarterfinal matchup.
In their two previous games, Carbon hung tough with Spanish Fork before falling victim to late game heroics from a seasoned and veteran Dons roster.
Spanish Fork put pressure on the Dinos in the bottom of the first inning as Carbon High pitcher Dakota Cisneros allowed the first two batters to reach base. Kayden Porter, the leader in home runs across all levels, hit the first pitch he saw from Cisneros sending it high over the left field fence for a quick 3-0 lead.
Despite the shaky start and some nail biting moments that followed, Cisneros held the Dons scoreless over the next three innings.
The Carbon High offense finally broke through in the third inning against Spanish Fork starter Hayden Nielsen. Dylan Vogrinec and Kris Murdoch led off the inning with back-to-back singles and two batters later Julian Tamllos reached base on a single. Jaren McCourt followed with a blast over the right centerfield wall to give the Dinos a 4-3 lead.
However the lead wouldn't last. Porter led off the bottom of the fifth inning with a double for Spanish Fork that started the five-run rally which was aided by a hit batter and a dropped fly ball by Seth Tryon that allowed more runs to cross the plate.
Nielsen finished off the complete game victory for the Dons.
With the win, Spanish Fork advanced to the 3A semifinals and will face Snow Canyon in the winner's bracket.
For the Dinos, the road to a 3A championship became a little rougher. The loss sent the Dinos to the consolation bracket where they will face a familiar foe in Delta in an elimination game scheduled for 1:30 p.m. at Kearns High School. The two teams split their two regular season meetings with the Dinos taking the first game 12-4 and losing 5-0 in the second game.
If the Dinos defeat Delta, they would advance to face the winner of Canyon View/Juan Diego at 7 p.m.