Fortunately for me, they're all great kids who just love to play the game, and all the credit goes to them for the win today. —Tabiona baseball coach Shay Price
SPANISH FORK — It's enough of a chore for Tabiona baseball coach Shay Price to simply field a baseball team, let alone taking that team to the state 1A semifinals, but that's exactly what Price did after his team secured a 2-1 victory over Wayne.
The Tigers used a dominant pitching performance from Stetson Hogan and some clutch hitting to take the win. Hogan struck out 14 batters in seven innings in the victory — leading a team that is made up of more than two-thirds of the school's entire male student population.
"We have just 23 boys enrolled at Tabiona and 16 of them play for me on the baseball team, so it's a challenge," said Price. "Fortunately for me, they're all great kids who just love to play the game, and all the credit goes to them for the win today."
Hogan set the tone early by striking out the side in the top of the first inning and then ending it the same way in the top of the seventh.
"Stetson has been there for us all year," said Price. "He keeps batters off-balance, he has a great attitude and he just did today what he's done all year. It was an awesome performance by him."
RBI singles from Monte Clyde and from Hogan himself in the bottom of the sixth inning, in what proved to be the game-winning hit.
"We've had so many great kids step up throughout the year," said Price. "Everyone from our catcher to our leadoff hitter, Demont Nay, are kids that we know we can count on. We needed everyone to get to where we are and hopefully we can keep it going."
This is Price's eighth year coaching baseball at Tabiona and he feels it's clearly the best team he's fielded.
"One through nine this is definitely the best group I've had," he said. "Hopefully, it's a group that proves able to go all the way, but no matter what happens I'm proud of them and how they've come together this year and competed."
In other 1A quarterfinal action, West Ridge Academy defeated Pinnacle, 13-3, and Panguitch took down Tintic, 11-1. Tabiona will match up with the winner of St. Joseph and Piute.