DRAPER — The top teams in any sport often prove resilient, with Park City's baseball team proving a lot of fight in a 9-6 win over Juan Diego on Friday.
The Miners rode a complete-game effort from the mound by sophomore Nick Stokes, along with a big five-run effort in the top of the third inning to take an important Region 11 win over the Soaring Eagle. Big hits came up and down the Miners' lineup, with Park City coach David Feasler pleased with the complete-game effort from all his players.
"Being resilient today with our entire team after taking a 17-6 loss just two days before to this team — guys could have just laid down, but they came back and fought for this last game," Feasler said. "The effort today reminds our guys that we can be one of the top teams in the state."
It didn't take long for Park City to get going from the plate, with Ryan Hunt leading off the scoring on a sacrifice fly that was followed up by an RBI single off the bat of Evan Pointer for an early 2-0 lead. Stokes kept Juan Diego's high-powered offense from crossing the plate leading up to a top of the third inning when the Miners took control.
An RBI single by Kellen Denkers started the scoring before a critical error made by Juan Diego with the bases loaded sent three runs across the plate for a commanding 7-0 lead.
"It was huge for our confidence and big for Stokes to get that early lead," Feasler said. "Having that cushion allows him to relax and if he gives up that one home run, then it's OK. It was huge for him."
As the final score suggests, Stokes was far from perfect and pitched just two clean innings, although one of those two innings came in the bottom of the seventh inning, just as Juan Diego's bats started to heat up.
"We're both light on pitching at this point, but he went out there and got through it," Feasler said. "He's a competitor and kept batters off-balance and that's a big performance for a sophomore."Comment on this story
Juan Diego fought back to cut the lead to 7-4 after four innings, courtesy of an RBI single by Lorenzo Soto, but more cushion was added in the top of the sixth when Denkers sent two runners to the plate on a double to stretch back the lead to 9-6.
"That was big. We needed that one and Kellen came through there," Feasler said. "We had guys come through all day and we need that against the top teams in our region. We now have to take on Tooele, and that's going to be a big challenge, so getting this one was important for our confidence."
With the win Park City, improves to 6-6 on the year and 3-2 in Region 11 play. Juan Diego falls to 8-2 overall and 7-1 in Region 11 play with the loss.