The Grand County High School baseball team suffered its first loss of the regular season last Friday, falling 5-1 at home to the Emery Spartans.
Despite the loss, however, the Red Devils remain atop the Region 15 standings with a 7-1 record, and can clinch the region title – or at least a share of it – this week.
In the Emery game April 19, both teams scored all their runs the first two innings, as Spartan batters crossed the plate three times in the first inning and twice more in the second.
Grand did manage to get a run in the bottom of the second inning, when Cameron Taylor singled and later scored on teammate Tanner White’s follow-up single.
Relief pitcher Preston Walston came in for starter Koi Cook in the third inning, and ended up pitching the final five innings for Grand, scattering a few hits and allowing no runs. But the Red Devils weren’t able to score any additional runs themselves, despite putting the ball in play several times.
“We just hit it right at them,” said Taylor, a junior who served as the team’s designated hitter during the game. Emery’s defense committed no errors during the contest, while the Red Devils made four errors in the field.
Grand’s two senior players, Preston Walston and Aaron Lewis, were honored along with their parents at the conclusion of the game.
Despite the loss, the Red Devils are still hoping to finish in first place in Region 15.
“If we beat San Juan today, that should lock up the region title for us,” GCHS assistant coach Ron Dolphin said Tuesday morning.
Grand had a 7-1 record with two region games left. The Red Devils were scheduled to play the San Juan Broncos at Blanding on April 23, and the Monticello Buckaroos at Monticello on Friday, April 26.
Second-place Emery is 5-2 in region play with three games remaining, including one at San Juan on Friday, April 26. Emery’s other two region games are against South Sevier. Heading into this week, third-place San Juan had a 5-3 record with two games left (home contests against Grand and Emery).
The opening round of the state 2A playoffs is scheduled to start Saturday, May 4.