Lancers, Titans come up short at 5-A tourney

May 21 2013 - 11:33pm

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OREM -- A showdown between two local teams could be in the making in the state 5-A baseball tournament, thanks to a pair of setbacks Tuesday that dropped Layton and Syracuse into the one-loss bracket.

The Region 1 rivals would each need to win an early game in order to stay alive to face each other today.

As it was Tuesday night, both teams fought incredibly hard but ended up on the short end of the score.

Layton played in the late game against a spry Riverton team that had already faced Syracuse earlier in the season and lost.

A few key mistakes here and there really set back the Lancers, who had a really great pitching performance from Caleb Harrop that seemed to go for naught as Layton fell to the Silverwolves 3-0 at Utah Valley's Brent Brown Ballpark.

"That was the biggest difference in the game for us tonight was a couple of plays here and there," Layton coach Rob Ferneau said.

"We were able to get some hits in the game, but for some reason, couldn't push a run across. (Riverton) played well enough to win and it was a great game all the way around. They got their bunts down; we didn't. They had hits with runners in scoring position and we didn't. That was the name of the game."

Layton really doesn't have a lot of time to stew and fret over the loss and the players are ready to get back into action this afternoon against American Fork at 4 p.m.

"We only need to get back on the bus tomorrow and get down here to see what happens," Ferneau added. "We are hoping that we can win a game and hopefully get another chance at Syracuse if they win."

Neither side got much going in the first inning. Riverton scored a solo run in the second inning as Cam Gust led off the inning with a single and was sacrificed over to second base. He took third on a wild pitch and came home on an RBI groundout from starting pitcher Tanner Draper.

The lead doubled in the bottom of the third after the Silverwolves loaded the bases with two outs. Gust ripped a shot at the Lancers' Logan Greenhalgh, who bobbled the ball and allowed Gust to reached safely at first to force another run across the plate.

The last run for Riverton came from Jimi Dixon, who stroked an RBI single to left center field to score pinch runner Jeff Arens from second.

From there, Draper took over, pitching a complete game five-hitter with five strikeouts. He had a bunt single and an RBI to help out his own cause.

Layton's best scoring chance came in the fourth inning as Quentin Marcelin and Greenhalgh had back to back singles to open the frame. However, Moises Perea ground into a double play and Rusty Wilbert ground out to the second baseman to end the threat.

Five different Lancers had hits on the night, but they failed to push a run across and left six runners on base.

* BINGHAM 5, SYRACUSE 2: At Brent Brown Ballpark, the home side Titans did as much as they could but failed to overcome an early deficit in dropping their semifinal game to the Bingham Miners.

"I've said it before and I'll say it again -- baseball is a funny game," Syracuse coach Jeff Bearnson said after his team's loss. "We played well defensively and made some plays when we had to, but they (Bingham) just grind on you. It's the first time I can remember Jason (Jourdan) not having a strikeout in a game. They put the ball in play and ended up with some bleeders and a couple of other hits that put us in the early hole.

"The good news is we get to come back and do it all over again (today) against Cottonwood. It should be a great game. We have some options pitching-wise and the boys are ready to get back to work."

Bingham's Chase Tavonatti and Jourdan pitched well in the game, but Tavonatti seemed poised and prime to get the win on the mound, getting out of a couple of jams that really could have hurt the Miners.

With that, the Miners were the first to score, getting a two-run single from TJ Bowcutt into shallow right field. Syracuse's Rieley Gibson nearly erased that 2-0 lead when he smashed a shot down the left field line that drifted just inches foul with a runner on base that could have tied the game. Instead, his next swing was into a double play that ended the Titans' scoring opportunity.

Syracuse ended up giving up a couple of more runs before getting on the board as Jake Groberg ruined the Miners' shutout with a solid two-run single to left field. Tavonatti then struck out the final batter to end the game.

Brandon Hammond doubled for the Titans as they slide into the one-loss bracket and will face Cottonwood at 1:30 p.m. at UVU.

The winners of Layton-American Fork and Syracuse-Cottonwood will play at 7 p.m.

4-A tourney

* MURRAY 7, LOGAN 1: At Kearns High, the last Top of Utah team was eliminated Tuesday as the Grizzlies fell in a loser's-out game.

Nick Smart had a strong day at the plate with a single, double and triple to lead Murray to victory. Chase Topham tripled as well for the Spartans as they rode the arm of Spencer Downs to the win.

* WESTLAKE 7, SKY VIEW 1: At Kearns, the Bobcats dropped a game that was postponed from Monday.

Daniel Nugent went 2 for 3 with a pair of doubles and two RBIs, while Jamin Van Sickle also drove in a pair of runs to lead Westlake past Sky View.

Mitch Berryhill took the loss.

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