Nerves can be a tricky thing to overcome. Snow Canyon’s baseball team experienced as much playing Cimarron Memorial in its season opener Thursday night.
After a shaky start, the Warriors finally got their offense rolling in the bottom two innings, but couldn’t wipe away a three-run deficit.
The Spartans won the outing 3-1.
“The first game is always hard,” sophomore Jake Frei said. “We’ll bounce back and play harder next time.”
The two teams have a lucrative history dating back to 2006 and typically square off in the first few games of the season. Cimarron won last year’s season opener 15-11. This year’s matchup, part of the aptly titled Snow Canyon Classic, offered a similar resolve.
“Snow Canyon has gotten a lot better over the years,” said winning pitcher Josh Nuernberg, who held the Warriors hitless until the sixth inning.
Snow Canyon’s struggles commenced in the third when, with two players — speedster Micquel Robinson and Matt Mosca — on base, Nick Borowski hit a line drive single to centerfield for the Spartans that brought in the first two runs of the game.
Later, in the sixth inning, Nico Decolati got on base, then gradually made his way to third. A Snow Canyon error allowed Decolati to run home for a 3-0 Cimarron lead.
The Warriors still had their chances.
In the bottom of the sixth, Jake Lindsey hit a double and reached third off Brenden Truman’s right field hit.
Truman was tagged out at first moments later after Nuernberg caught him leading off, a play that came back to haunt the Warriors as Chandler Day hit a double two batters later that would have presumably sent Truman home and cut the deficit to one.
Instead, Lindsey notched Snow Canyon’s only point of the game off Mason Smith’s sacrifice hit, Day recorded his double and the inning ended on Riley Gates’ pop up fly to left field with the bases loaded.
In the seventh, Snow Canyon’s Brady Sargent nailed a whopper to left field and reached second. Truman, who went 2-of-3 on the night, followed up with a hit that moved Sargent to third.
With two outs, Smith strolled to the plate, battled hard, but couldn’t convert the necessary runs.
“Coach told us we need to be ready at the batters box,” Frei said. “We need to be ready to hit.”
The Warriors, who lost seven seniors in the off-season, finished with four hits and four errors. Riley Gates pitched six and a half innings, and gave up five hits during his time on the mound. They’ll look to bounce back tonight against Syracuse at 8 p.m.
PAROWAN 3, DELTA 1: Colby Warren threw four scoreless innings and lifted Parowan over the winless Rabbits Thursday afternoon.
Kirk Harrison hit a double for the Rams.
DESERT HILLS 12, RANCHO, NEV. 4: The Thunder capped off a sensational offensive performance Thursday night, defeating visiting Rancho by eight runs in a contest that was won in the first inning.
Desert Hills scored six runs to start and an additional run in each of the next two innings for the quick 8-0 lead.
Rancho scored two runs in the fourth inning and two more in the sixth.
Braiden Irvin hit a double, a triple and collected two RBIs, while Ty Rutledge and Carson Clement each went 2-of-4 to give the Thunder their first win of the year at the Desert Hills Invitational.
They will next play Maple Mountain tonight at 7 p.m. at Desert Hills.