If we can hit some bombs that is usually a bonus. It was good to see us be able to win in a different way. —Lone Peak head coach Jeremy Berg
HIGHLAND — Prior to Wednesday afternoon’s contest against the Bingham Miners, the second of three games in a series between Region 4 foes, the Lone Peak Knights had proven they could score runs.
After all, they had plated 10 runs in wins over Taylorsville, Righetti, California and Salesian, California.
They had scored nine in a victory over La Jolla, California, not to mention the seven runs they plated against Clearfield and six against Copper Hills.
The commonality in all of those wins was small ball. The Knights had lived by it.
“We win by stealing bases, going first to third. That is how we want to play baseball,” Lone Peak head coach Jeremy Berg said.
That wasn’t the case Wednesday at Lone Peak High School, however. Instead the Knights went yard, again and again and again.
Colton Easton hit a three-run homer, Crew Robinson added a three-run jack of his own and Connor Pay chipped in a monster solo shot for good measure.
Combined with the pitching of Tom Bateman, who went five innings, the Knights proved too much for the visiting Miners and walked away with a 13-7 victory.
“That is not necessarily the style of baseball we play, even though we played it today,” said Berg. “We are not a home run hitting team. I think that was the first home run of Crew’s life.
“If we can hit some bombs that is usually a bonus. It was good to see us be able to win in a different way.”
The power surge was nonexistent at the outset. In fact, after Easton drove in the opening run of the game, on an RBI double in the bottom of the first, the next three Knights scores came courtesy of Miner miscues.
The most devastating, for Bingham that is, occurred in the second inning.
With his team trailing 2-0, Miners starting pitcher Ethan Fowlks got into an early jam to start the bottom of the second. A quick single by Robinson, followed by a double by Chipper Beck had the Knights threatening.
What is often a routine play turned into a disaster. Snarr’s throw was off target and as a result, Robinson and Beck both scored, with Gambill advancing all the way to third.
The error was just one of many by Bingham, and by the end of the third inning, Lone Peak held a 6-0 advantage.
The Knights stretched that lead to as many as eight runs after Easton and Pay hit back-to-back homers in the fourth.
At that point, it looked as though the game were over, but Bingham had other plans. The visitors rallied in the sixth inning, scoring five runs on RBI doubles by Derek Soffe, Nick Stevens and Nick Daynes, not to mention a run-scoring single by Joey Dixon.
When Robinson came to bat for Lone Peak in the bottom of the sixth, with two outs and two men on, the Knights were reeling.
What had been a seemingly insurmountable lead was now down to just three runs and the hosts best opportunity to stave off Bingham was hanging by a thread.
Robinson took that thread and knocked it out of the park. The senior connected with an offering by Miners reliever JP Grateron, sending it over the center field fence.
“Crew’s home run was huge,” said Berg. “That really jacked up the guys. It was a big swing for us.
“We put up 13 runs on a really good Bingham team today. If we can put up runs against that team we can put up runs on anybody. I think everybody, one through nine in the order, contributed in some way. That is the kind of baseball we want to play. Today was a complete game.”
With the win, Lone Peak improved to 7-6 overall and 1-1 in Region 4, while Bingham fell to 7-8 and 1-1 in region play.
The teams will finish their series Friday afternoon at Bingham High School.