High school baseball: Spanish Fork's Nielsen leads 3A South to All-Star victory
OGDEN — Hayden Nielsen's last game wearing a Spanish Fork baseball uniform was a memorable one.
The Dons' star scored all three times he came to bat and also pitched an inning to lead the 3A South All-Stars to a 7-2 victory over the 3A North All-Stars at Lindquist Field on Saturday afternoon in the 68th annual high school baseball all-star games
"This is the last time I'll put this jersey on, so it was memorable, and to win the MVP that was pretty neat. Just coming out here and representing Spanish Fork, it was awesome," said Nielsen.
Nielsen went 2-for-3 with a pair of singles and three runs scored.
"I'd take a kid like that on my team any day, that kid's a stud, just a good respectful kid, just plays an all-around great game. He doesn't have a weakness to his game," said Deseret Hills coach Jerry Beck.
Cedar outfielder Kole Halloday also had a strong game for the 3A South squad going 2-for-2 with a double and an RBI.
The 3A South did most of its damage in the bottom of the sixth inning scoring four runs on five hits to break open what had been a 2-1 pitchers' duel through five and a half innings.
"You could tell our guys were a little rusty, the heat of the day sucked it out of us a little bit," said Beck.
Led by Payson's Kolton Brost and Spanish Fork's Kayden Porter, who each pitched two innings of no-hit ball to start the game, the 3A South pitching staff dominated the North hitters striking out nine and only allowing four hits.
One of those hits, however, was a solo home run over the left field wall by Stansbury's Jake Witkowski.
Nielsen actually surrendered the solo shot, realistically the only mistake he made all day. The victory doesn't take away the sting of not winning the 3A state championship, but Nielsen said it was fun to get bragging rights of the northern teams.
"It was kind of fun playing with the guys that we've played in the state tournament. They're cool guys," said Nielsen.