Summit Extreme Black Diamonds prep for playoffs |

Summit Extreme Black Diamonds prep for playoffs

Susan Gilmore

PLAyoff baseball

Fourth of July baseball can be a magical experience, and for a brief moment in the bottom of the seventh inning it looked like it would be for the Summit Extreme Black Diamonds. Trailing 2-5 headed in to the last frame of the game, center fielder Cody Minnis walked and then took second on a passed ball to get into scoring position. After a groundout by John Andrews, designated hitter Nick Henry strode to the plate. And with one swing Henry brought in two runs on a no-doubt home run to inch the Black Diamonds closer. Unfortunately, that was all the heroics left in the game, and the Black Diamonds fell 4-5.

The team was led on the mound by Daniel Gunnerson, who has been a bright spot in the pitching rotation all season. Gunnerson put in five innings of work, allowing five runs over the stretch. However, the bats didn’t help him much. Steamboat’s starting pitcher managed a devastating 10 strikeouts in the game and even when the Black Diamonds did get on base they found it difficult to keep anything going, scoring four runs off of eight hits.

In the second game of the day, things looked much better for the home team. The bats weren’t exactly on fire, but they were consistent with the Black Diamonds scoring one run in each of the first three innings. Summit High grad Andrews Shaw put up a masterful pitching performance allowing three runs in six innings pitched, and Ben Wiley came in for the seventh to shut the door and give Summit the 6-3 victory.


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 FINAL

SS 0 0 2 3 0 0 0 5

SUMMIT 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 4


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 FINAL

SS 0 2 0 0 0 1 0 3

SUMMIT 1 1 1 0 3 0 X 6

July 6 at Rangely Roughnecks

The Black Diamonds traveled to Rangely on Thursday for a pair of games that would give pitchers nightmares and make hitters salivate. Summit jumped out to an early lead in the first game scoring two in the top half of the first, but just as quickly fell behind as Rangely put up three runs in the bottom half of the inning. And they didn’t stop there. Rangely added five more runs over the next two innings before a brief scoring hiatus in the fourth followed by 10 more runs over the next two innings. It was ugly for pitchers and defenders on both sides — Summit also committed three errors in the game.

Summit’s hitters tried to keep pace with the Roughnecks, as Cody Minnis had four hits in the game and Trevor Luckey drove in four runs. The team even got the deficit down to two runs when they scored four in the top half of the fourth inning. That was as close as the game would get though, and with the onslaught of runs in the fifth and sixth innings Rangely walked away with the 18-13 win.

The next game saw more of the same from the Roughnecks, and unfortunately less from the Black Diamonds. Rangely set the tone early jumping out to a four-run lead at the end of the first inning en route to a 17-6 win. Again, sloppy play hurt Summit as Rangely was able to score 17 runs on just 13 hits thanks to three errors from the Black Diamonds.


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 FINAL

SUMMIT 2 0 0 4 0 5 2 13

RR 3 2 3 0 5 5 X 18


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 FINAL

SUMMIT 0 0 2 0 4 0 X 6

RR 4 1 0 5 2 5 X 17

July 7 against Vail Vipers

After a doubleheader in Rangely on Thursday, Summit had little time to make the trek home and recover for a doubleheader in Breckenridge against Vail on Friday. The games were Summit’s only night games of the season though, which bought the team a few precious hours after tough road losses. Early on it looked like it would be enough when Summit dropped two runs on Vail in the first inning. The team would hold the lead through the first three innings, only giving up one run to Vail before the fourth, and then the wheels came off. Vail notched nine runs in the fourth to chase Summit’s starter out of the game. The offense tried to respond in the bottom half of the inning, cutting into Vail’s lead in a big way with six runs of their own. However, Vail added another two runs in the fifth to secure the victory, sending Summit into the between-games break with an 8-12 loss.

The second game of the doubleheader looked scary from the get-go. Vail jumped on Summit’s starter in the first inning, getting five runs before the frame was over. Summit kept their composure though and started chipping away at the lead with two runs in the first and another run in the second. In the third inning, the home team broke things open dropping six runs to go up 9-5 on the Vipers. The Vipers tried to respond in the top of the fourth, but Summit’s offense again shut things down by adding three more runs in the bottom half of the inning. The offensive deluge was led by Trevor Luckey who collected five RBIs in the game. His three hits were matched by Andrew Ryals and the team was very efficient with their work, scoring 12 runs on nine hits for the 12-7 win.


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 FINAL

VV 0 1 0 9 2 0 0 12

SUMMIT 2 0 0 6 0 0 0 8


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 FINAL

VV 5 0 0 2 0 0 0 7

SUMMIT 2 1 6 3 0 0 X 12


It’s time to put up or shut up headed into the double-elimination playoff tournament to end the Mountain West Baseball league season. Summit has a tough road to the championship, finishing the regular season in seventh place out of eight teams, just one game above the cellar-dwelling Carbondale Cowboys. The Black Diamonds have shown they are more than capable of putting up runs and they have had strong individual pitching performances throughout the season, but they will need to get it all going at once if they want to have a chance at going deep into the tournament.

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