Summit baseball team rolls to three straight wins on the road

Team prepares to take on Palisade High School in first league matchup of the season

Cassius Bradford stands at the plate during Summit's senior day game against the Aspen Skiers on May 17, 2022
Cody Jones/Summit Daily News

The Summit High School boys baseball team may have started the 2023 baseball season with a close loss to Montrose High School, but since that loss on March 10, the Tigers have been red hot.

With inclement weather postponing Summit’s slate of games following its loss to Montrose, Summit worked hard in practice for 19 days in hopes of striking a mark in the win column for the first time this season. The unforeseen extra preparation paid off. The team didn’t just muster a win over Conifer High School. It also recorded two more wins to start the month of April.

In Summit’s game against Conifer on March 29, the score remained close between the two non-league teams for the entire seven-inning affair. In the end, it was Summit who came out with the win, defeating Conifer 2-0.

Senior Cassius Bradford and junior Mason Lukasiewicz scored runs with the team recording a total of eight hits to Conifer’s three hits.

The win gave the team some confidence going into its game against Evergreen High School on Saturday, April 1, and Basalt High School on Tuesday, April 4.

Summit’s bats ran hot against Evergreen on Saturday. The team produced 17 scored runs and held Evergreen to six runs.

Summit especially produced in the top of the sixth and seventh innings when Summit was able to record a combined 15 points, scoring eight runs in the sixth and seven in the seventh. Those final two innings ultimately powered Summit past Evergreen’s six runs in the bottom of the seventh.

The vast majority of the Summit’s 10-man batting roster produced runs for the team. Senior Zach Willms recorded two hits and scored three times, and senior Corey Cooper was credited with three hits and two runs scored.

“It was a good game, and it always feels good to beat Evergreen,” Bradford said. “Traditionally they have a good team. It was good to go to Denver and get a win.”

Summit used the momentum it gained through its 11-point victory over Evergreen to battle the Basalt Longhorns baseball team on Tuesday afternoon. The two non-league teams exchanged points in the first three innings, but eventually it was Summit who pulled to a 8-5 lead with a six-run inning in the top of the fourth.

Basalt was quick to respond to Summit’s lead, however, as the Longhorns scored four runs to conclude the fifth inning. The onslaught of runs brought the score to 9-9, and the game was truly up for the taking.

In the end, it was once again Summit who was able to produce runs. Summit scored three runs in the top of the sixth and a single run in the top of the seventh to power past Basalt for the 13-11 win.

“Basalt was a good game, but we have to play better if we want to beat Palisade.We got them Saturday,” Bradford said. “We started the season out pretty well, and our momentum has been carrying through.”

The Tigers were led by standout batting performances from Lukasiewicz and senior Jack Schierholz. In terms of baserunning, junior Carter Luetkens and freshman Sam Eldredge both stole a base each.

The win over Basalt advanced Summit’s record to 3-1 overall while Basalt fell to 1-2 overall.

The Summit High School baseball team will now prepare to play its first league games of the season against Palisade High School in an away game on Saturday, April 8.

“We are definitely looking to get a win — at least take one of the games from them,” Bradford said. “It will definitely be a hard game. Palisade has traditionally been really good, and we haven’t beat them in a long time. Hopefully this year will be the year.”

Summit will play a slate of two games against Palisade on Saturday. The first game will begin at 11 a.m. and the second game will start at approximately 1 p.m.

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