A key showdown in 3A WSL baseball was last week's Delta versus Cedaredge baseball game played in Cedaredge. The Panthers (5-0 and 11-4) were on a current winning streak (five games) that stretched to seven after a 19-0 win over Moffat County (3-2 and 5-7) on Saturday.
In between Cedaredge and Moffat County was Rifle, a third place team (7-2 and 11-5) in 4A WSL standings. Cedaredge, the number three team in 3A WSL, has a 3-2 and 9-5 record.
Delta rolled past Cedaredge, 12-1, with an eight-run second inning. The Panthers trailed Rifle going to the seventh inning and rallied for four runs and a 9-6 win in Rifle. Saturday's tilt against Moffat County was a 19-0 decision in a five inning game.
Delta 12, Bruins 1
A 5-1 start after one inning was enough to carry the Panthers to a big win over Cedaredge. With Gunnison and Cedaredge seen as top contenders against the Panthers, last Tuesday's win eased anxiety for Delta coach Steve Reiher and his Panthers.
Another three runs in the second inning added breathing room for Delta while the Panthers' defense kept Cedaredge off the scoreboard from the second inning on.
Delta added two runs in the fifth and another two in the top of the seventh to make the final score 12-1.
Drake Horn picked up his third win against no losses in six innings of work. Horn gave up six hits, one run and struck out six Bruins.
Chris Lindley was the loser and left the senior with a 2-2 record.
Justin Violett had three of Delta's 11 hits and he scored two of the Panthers 12 runs and drove in one run.
Ty McCurdy went 1-4 with an RBI and he scored three runs for the Panthers. Damon Jensen greeted Lindley with a home run on the first pitch of the game to give Delta a 1-0 lead.
Brandon O'Hern plated the Bruin's lone run, in the first inning, on a single that allowed Colton Hoerr to score. Hoerr had reached on a double.
Lindley and Sean Dale had two hits for the Bruins.
Delta 9, Rifle 6
The Bears came into last Tuesday's contest against the Panthers with a five-game winning streak on the line. Delta had a five-game win streak as well and had to battle adversity to earn its sixth straight victory.
Rifle set the tone early with a three-run first inning. The Panthers scored twice in the top of the second only to have the Bears tack on another two runs for a 5-2 lead going to the third.
Delta scored twice in the third and its defense held Rifle scoreless in the bottom half of the inning. A singleton in the fourth tied the game at 5-5.
The Bears took a one-run advantage after five innings to lead 6-5 as the two teams entered the seventh frame. Delta ignited a rally which produced four runs and then employed its defense, and the strong arm of Jaspar Carmichael, to claim the 9-6 non-conference victory.
McCurdy's 1-3 day at the plate produced three RBIs. Carmichael helped his own cause, as the starting pitcher, with a three-hit day, including a double and two RBI. Blake Reiher and Violett adding two hits each with an RBI each.
Carmichael finished the game with seven innings worked which included seven innings of work, 10 hits and six runs and eight strike outs.
Rifle's Takoda Chaney had three hits for the Bears, including two doubles.
Delta 19, MC 0
Moffat County's day began with a jolt as the Panthers struck for six runs in the first inning. Another two runs in the second frame gave the Panthers a 7-0 lead.
The Panthers offense continued to produce runs in the third inning with a five-run surge and then another six-run barrage in the fourth for a 19-0 lead.
Delta's defense didn't allow a run in the final inning producing a shutout for the combined effort on the mound from Reiher, Cristan Hall and Violett. Reiher allowed the only Bulldogs hit of the game in three innings of work. Hall worked an inning and a third and Violett got in two-thirds of an inning on the mound.
Delta outhit the Bulldogs 18-1 with Tristan Brown doing the most damage on three hits, including a pair of doubles and three RBIs. Jensen and Violett also had three hits in the game while Reiher, McCurdy and Keller had two hits each. Keller had a home run in one of his at bats.
Delta is in Gunnison on May 4, at 4 p.m. and finishes the week, on Saturday, at 11 a.m. against Grand Valley.