Wolverines baseball splits doubleheader with Dayton to open league (updated)
After having the first three league games of the year canceled, Truckee’s baseball team took to the field in Sparks, Nev., on Monday, March 19, for a doubleheader against Dayton.
The lack of live playing time was evident in Truckee’s first game as five errors led to an 8-3 Dayton win, but the Wolverines responded with a much stronger performance in the second game, bouncing back with a 7-3 victory.
“We could have had a much better first game,” said Head Coach Jeff Murphy. “We were facing a kid (Trevor Burrows) who is one of the top pitchers in the league. We kind of let that dictate our at-bats earlier on. We could’ve done a better job at the dish.”
Burrows finished the game with 12 strikeouts and allowed two earned runs.
The Wolverines were limited to nine hits in the game, and were led by Tyler Estabrook’s two hits and two runs. Pitcher Gary Grosjean turned in a solid performance, going 5 1/3 innings, allowing two earned runs, and striking out six batters.
“We did have a good pitching performance from Grosjean,” Murphy said. “A little more support defensively, making some plays behind him, I think it’s a different ballgame.”
The Wolverines played a much cleaner second game, and in contrast the Dust Devils committed a trio of timely errors in the field, leading to a 7-3 Truckee victory.
“Part of baseball is just about having timely hits and making less mistakes than the other team,” Murphy said. “And it was that way for them in the first game and flip-flopped for us in the second game.”
After Truckee fell behind 1-0 in the second game, Grosjean drove in Cole Gardner to even the contest in the second inning. The Wolverines then took the lead the following inning off a double by Derek LaFerriere and errors by the Dust Devils, which led to a pair of runs crossing the plate.
Dayton responded by plating two runs in the fourth and one in the fifth to retake a 4-3 lead, but errors in the field would ultimately doom the Dust Devils.
Truckee put their first three runners on base to start the bottom of the fifth inning, and then had Elliot Rost hit a sacrifice fly to even the game at 4. The Wolverines would load the bases again two batters later, and had Spencer Edmondson score on a wild pitch. Estabrook then stepped to the plate and hit a ball to shortstop, which resulted in an overthrow at first base and two more runs for Truckee. The Wolverines would eventually push runners to second and third, but were unable to move anymore across, leaving the score 7-4.
Truckee maintained the lead over the next two innings behind strong defensive play and the steady pitching of Just, leading to the squad’s first league win of the season.
“Colin Just pitched very well in the second game,” said Murphy. “Both our catchers Joel Estabrook and Derek LaFerriere did a great job behind the dish today. They really held the running game in check.”
From the plate, Tyler Ferrera led the Wolverines with a 3 for 4 performance.
Truckee (5-2, 1-1 Northern League) will return to Sparks for another game against Dayton ((4-2, 101 Northern League) on Tuesday, March 20.