Last week, the Red Devils beat the Monticello Buckaroos on Tuesday, April 22, then defeated their arch-rivals, the San Juan Broncos, on Friday, April 25. Grand’s 14-5 win against the Buckaroos put the Red Devils in second-place in Region 15, and their 8-1 victory over the Broncos put the Red Devils in a tie with Emery for first place in the region.
GCHS senior Koi Cook and junior Kyler Nelson hit a combined three home runs for the Devils during the contest against Monticello. Nelson and senior Cameron Taylor shared time pitching. Nelson ultimately took home the win for the Red Devils in the last inning.
Although there were strong winds during the game, Grand still managed to pull off strong play in both offense and defense, coaches said. The Red Devils only made one defensive error and managed multiple base hits along with several home runs.
“The team played great all the way around. We won and we needed to win to secure second [place] at region,” said GCHS assistant coach Ron Dolphin.
Friday’s matchup against the San Juan Broncos was the Red Devils’ last region game of the season. The contest took place in San Juan’s home territory, but Grand played an excellent game and brought home the win.
With the defeat of the Broncos, the Red Devils ended their regular season play with a 10-2 region record.
Cook pitched for the Red Devils and Taylor hit a home run during the contest against the Broncos.
“It was really good to get two quality wins,” said Dolphin.
The win against the Broncos tied the Red Devils and the Emery Spartans for first place in Region 15. After winning a coin flip, Grand will advance into the state competition as the first-place seed.
The opening round of 2014 state tournament will be held in Moab on Saturday, May 5. As of press time, pairings had not yet been determined because teams in some regions still had regular-season games scheduled for this week.
“Last year we were successful at home. We are hoping for another successful host weekend this year,” said Dolphin.
The first game of the tournament will begin at 9 a.m. and the Red Devils’ first game will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday. The winners of those two games will play in the quarter-finals at 1 p.m., and the losing teams will play a consolation game at 3 p.m.