Summit Extreme Black Diamonds struggle against Steamboat before Grand Junction sweep in Week 4 |

Summit Extreme Black Diamonds struggle against Steamboat before Grand Junction sweep in Week 4

Leo Wolfson
Special to the Daily

Week 4 box scores

Steamboat Storm — June 28

Game One

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

SDB 0 1 2 4 0 0 0 7

STM 0 0 0 4 0 1 3 8

Game Two

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

SDB 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1

STM 2 1 0 0 0 2 X 5

Vail Vipers — June 30

Game One

1 2 3 4 5

Vail 3 3 6 2 2 2

SDB 3 3 6 2 X 14

Game Two

Rained out

Grand Junction Rocky Mountain Oysters — July 1

Game One

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

GJ 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 2

SBD 2 0 0 1 0 1 0 4

Game Two

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

GJ 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1

SBD 1 1 4 3 1 0 0 10


2016 Summit Extreme Black Diamonds schedule

Summit County’s local collegiate team plays in the Mountain West Summer College Baseball League with five others, including Vail, Grand Junction, Eagle Valley, Steamboat and Glenwood Springs/Carbondale. All games are double-headers beginning at noon.

Week 5

Tuesday July 5 — Summit vs. Eagle Valley

Thursday July 7 — Summit vs. Glenwood Springs

Saturday July 9 — Summit vs. Steamboat Springs

Coming off a tough two-loss finish to their third week of play, the Summit Extreme Black Diamonds (8-10) needed redemption, but unfortunately their hole only became deeper, as they dropped both games against the Steamboat Storm to start the week.

Steamboat Storm — June 28

In Tuesday’s Game One, Summit lost a 8-7 heartbreaker to the Storm. The Diamonds jumped on the scoreboard first thanks to a pair of singles in the second and a two-run Blake Butcher (LaGrange College) homer in the third.

In the fouth, SBD padded their lead when a Nick Boys (Iowa Central C.C.) RBI double and a few Storm fielding miscues allowed five to cross the plate. With a comfortable 7-0 lead, it appeared that Summit was well on their way to victory.

But, oh, if this were true.

Through three innings, Summit native Mitch Grey (Trinidad State) had been great, only giving up three hits and a walk. But, like a light switch flicked off, also went Gray’s game in the fourth inning. The incoming sophomore started the inning giving up three consecutive walks and a double, which got the Storm rally rolling.

Reliever Tom Novick (San Diego U.) came in for Gray and was able to weather the barrage, but the damage was already done with Summit’s lead cut to 7-4.

In the fifth, Cody Kearns entered in relief for the Storm and silenced the Summit bats. Kearns struck out six over the next three innings while only allowing a hit and walk.

By their final at-bats, Steamboat had crept even closer, now down only 7-5. Novick had been solid for Summit, but his efforts went to waste in that final frame. Three straight Storm hits to open the inning followed by a Summit error brought Steamboat closer, and it only got worse from there. Another single tied it at 7-7, and, with only one out and runners in scoring position, even extra innings looked like a long shot for the Diamonds. Novick responded to the adversity by walking a batter and then gave up a sacrifice fly, which scored the winning run.

Summit’s offensive woes only continued in Game Two. Through four innings, SBD stranded five batters on base without getting a single run across.

Luckily, starting pitcher Matt Stone (Iowa Central C.C.) kept Summit within striking distance, giving up three runs through four innings. The Summit scoring drought finally burst in the fifth, when a Tavin Thompson (LaGrange College) RBI single scored Tanner Johnson (Iowa Central C.C.), but that’s all Summit could get. The home team lost the doubleheader finale, 5-1.

Vail Vipers — June 30

Returning home couldn’t have come at a better time for the reeling Black Diamonds (8-12), who were now in the midst of a four game losing streak. Their opponent, the Vail Vipers (10-10), split their games against Summit this year.

Zach Grenell (Iowa Central C.C.) took the mound for the Black Diamonds and from the start was impressive, only allowing two base runners and no runs through the first three innings. Summit, on the other hand, jumped on Viper pitcher Jordan Weaks early and often, scoring three runs in each of the first two innings.

In the bottom of the third, singles from Murray Ruggeiro (Central Penn College) and Trevor Rosenberg (San Diego U.) followed by a big double from Butcher turned the game into a blowout. Boys followed later with a three-run homer, and, by the time the Vipers finally got a third out, Summit had a 12-0 lead.

Unlike Summit’s blown opportunity against Steamboat on Tuesday, the Diamonds held their lead thanks to stellar pitching from Grenell. The native Johnston, Iowa wasn’t overpowering, but extremely efficient, earning a complete game two-hitter despite only throwing three strikeouts. A a big part of his efficiency came from throwing first-pitch strikes to eight batters.

Summit added two more runs in the fourth and all the Vipers could muster for the remainder was two in the fifth, which gave Summit a much-needed 14-2 win with mercy rule in effect.

Game Two of the doubleheader was rained out.

Grand Junction Rocky Mountain Oysters — July 1

A much greater challenge lay in store for the Extreme Black Diamonds on Friday, when they went up against the league’s hottest team, Grand Junction (13-8).

The Oysters were riding a six-game winning streak, during which they had outscored their opponents 77-28, so it was no secret that defense would be critical for Summit to win.

In Game One, Summit delivered exactly that, thanks to an incredible three-hit performance from pitchers Luke Egging (McCook C.C.) and Spencer Franko (Iowa Central C.C.) for a 4-2 opening game win.

The Diamonds got going with two singles and a walk in the first inning that put them up, 2-0. In the fourth, Boys drove home Alex Sorensen (Mesa C.C.) with a sacrifice fly that extended their lead to 3-0.

On the defensive side Egging was a star, allowing only three base runners through the first four innings. The Oysters squeezed one across in the bottom of the fourth, but Egging held strong and got out of trouble with one man left on.

Two consecutive Summit defensive errors early in the fifth allowed Grand Junction’s Hayden Sloane to score on a sacrifice, but, once again, Egging delivered, snagging three consecutive outs to end the Viper threat.

For Summit’s last scoring punch, starting catcher Sorensen led off the sixth with a triple, and then Boys drove Sorensen home with a single, which pushed the lead to 4-2.

From there, Franko put on a showcase, pitching a two-inning no-hitter, which got him the save and Summit a 4-2 win.

Game Two started much like the first, as Summit scored most of their runs early on but kept the Oyster bats cold throughout.

In the third, the Summit floodgates opened up. There were no home runs, but the Diamonds capitalized on a few hits and Oyster blunders for a commanding 6-0 lead.

Later in the fourth, Summit added more insurance runs off back-to-back doubles from Tanner Bowden (Salt Lake C.C.) and Blaine Swift (LaGrange College), which extended their lead to 9-0.

They held that margin for the remainder after exchanging runs with the Oysters in the fifth, taking a 10-1 win for the crucial doubleheader sweep.

With their third win in a row, SBD (11-12) got another quality pitching performance, this time from Tyler Daugherty (Scottsdale C.C.). Over six innings, the incoming junior threw six strikeouts, while allowing only six hits and zero walks.

The sweep of the league leading Oysters improved Summit’s record to 11-12 and bumped the team into fourth place in the Mountain West Summer College Baseball League.

It couldn’t be better timing, as the team has all of their six remaining regular season games at home this week. Today they have a doubleheader date with league-worst Eagle Valley (5-19) at Frisco’s Peninsula Park. First pitch is at noon.

If you can’t make it out, check out @SumCoSports and @SummitEBD on Twitter for live game updates.

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