Last week, the Red Devils played their last varsity home game of the season against the Emery Spartans on Tuesday, April 8, scoring a big win in the tight contest against the reigning Region 15 champions.
“It was a great game. It was the way I like to see baseball played,” said Red Devil assistant coach Ron Dolphin.
Neither the Red Devils nor the Spartans were able to put points on the scoreboard until the fifth inning, when Grand finally scored a hard-fought run. Emery’s pitcher attempted to throw out a base hit bunt by sophomore Dalton McElhaney on second base. The pitcher’s overthrow into the outfield advanced McElhaney to third, where junior Ronnie Dolphin’s squeeze bunt put the Red Devils in the lead.
Grand held the Spartans scoreless through the top of the seventh inning when, with the bases loaded, pitcher Red Devil Kyler Nelson struck out Emery’s last batters to claim the 1-0 win. Nelson pitched for the entire length of the contest, holding the Spartans to five hits and striking out eight of Emery’s batters. The Red Devils also played strong defense throughout the game.
“Everybody contributed to the win in some form or another,” said Dolphin.
On Thursday, April 10, Grand scored back-to-back wins in a double-header against the South Sevier Rams. The first game of the afternoon was a tug-of-war between the Red Devils and the Rams.
As the designated home team, Grand had the last opportunity at bat in the contest. After the Rams took the lead in the first several innings, GCHS sophomore Braden Ward hit a grand slam to tie the score. In the next inning, the Red Devils relinquished three more runs to the Rams, but soon after came back to take the lead.
“It was a back and forth game,” Dolphin said. “We came up behind them four times.”
The Devils were up 9-7 in the bottom of the sixth inning of the contest, but by the bottom of the seventh, Grand was down 10-9. The Red Devils ultimately rallied to beat the Rams 12-10.
“[The game] really showed our resilience as a team,” said Dolphin.
The final game of the day featured home runs by Red Devil juniors Ronnie Dolphin and Tanner White and senior Cameron Taylor. After gaining momentum in the third inning following Dolphin’s home run, the Red Devils had to fight for the win, coming from behind to finally take home a 12-7 victory.
“In both those games we had a kid get us excited play and fired up. The motivation really bred more success,” Dolphin said. “We hit all four home runs of the season in one day.”
Grand will play its next region game on the road against Monticello on Tuesday, April 22. The varsity game is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. The Red Devil varsity squad will play San Juan in Blanding on Friday, April 25 beginning at 3 p.m. The junior varsity and C teams will play San Juan on Saturday, April 26 beginning at noon.