OREM — Dixie's Dayton Dempsey ran through the sign to score the game-winning run during his team's 12-2 win over Snow Canyon Thursday, and will likely do some more running prior to the Flyers' next game, as a result.
While happy with the win, and his team's overall performance, Dixie coach Danny Ipson wasn't particularly fond of one of his senior leaders running through the stop sign at third base, despite the result.
"He absolutely had the stop sign and we're going to have to decide whether to do something in the kangaroo court or not," Ipson deadpanned. "No question he ran through the stop sign, so he may do some extra running during practice tonight."
Dempsey's game-winning run came by virtue of a Payden Harrah single with the bases-loaded and one out in the bottom of the fifth inning. Harrah's single was hit sharply to the outfield — making Dempsey's aggressive play seemingly unwarranted, although he safely slid in just before the tag, as the Flyers advanced to the quarterfinal round of the no-loss bracket.
"That's our senior leader, running through the stop sign, but he's probably the only kid who could get away with it," Ipson said.
Dixie, as a team, got away with the win in just five innings played due to a barrage of hits — 13 in all — and some solid pitching by starter Tyson Fisher, who pitched a complete game.
The Flyers built an early 2-0 lead after one inning before breaking things open in the third. Some timely hitting, coupled with some mistakes made by the Warriors, allowed six runs to come across the plate, for a commanding 8-0 lead through three complete. Key RBI hits in the inning came off the bats of Harrah, Wyatt Woodland and Chase Lundin.
"We were just trying to stay in our game," Ipson said of his team's third inning performance. "We've been aggressive offensively, over the course of the year, and we put some good swings on the ball...We took advantage of what they gave us and we just wanted to stay focused."
Turns out Fisher was way below the 60 pitch count after the third inning, which would make him eligible to pitch again in the next game, should he have been pulled then. While tempting to do as much, given his team's 8-0 lead, Ipson opted to err on the side of caution.
"Obviously that comes into the conversation, but in the state tournament there are too many crazy things that have happened over the years," Ipson said. "We just wanted to make sure that we went out and took care of business in this game."
Fisher finished with 78 pitches and ran smoothly before encountering a bit of trouble in the top half of the fifth.
Down 0-10, and in danger of having the game cut short after the top half of the fifth, Snow Canyon's Austin Deming and Cannon Secrist contributed RBIs to cut the lead to 10-2 and extend the game. That extension proved short-lived, however, as Dixie quickly responded to put the 10-run rule into effect and end the game before the bottom half of the fifth.
Dixie now has some time to rest until playing Friday at 4:30 — a big advantage as it hopefully heads toward Saturday's championship round.
"It gives us some time to step back, take a breath and refocus on (Thursday)'s game, and then just see what happens," Ipson said.