The Gunnison Valley High School baseball team notched two blowout wins against North Sevier and rode a one-hit gem by its pitching ace to defeat 3A Carbon last week.
North Sevier travelled to Gunnison on Tuesday and Friday, where the Bulldogs won by scores of 17-1 and 18-9, respectively. The game at Carbon on Wednesday ended 1-0, with senior Janzen Keisel striking out 18 batters. He faced 28 total batters in the game.
“They were good, but Janzen just threw probably the best game I’ve watched from a pitcher in a long time,” Coach Max Sanders said. “We played really well defensively — I mean, it’s pretty easy when you only have to make, like, three plays [in the field].”
The Bulldog fielders only had to make four outs. A Dino batter reached base on one of Keisel’s recorded strikeouts after a passed ball on the third strike. Bulldog fielders made four errors, and two Dino batters reached base on walks.
In the fifth inning, Gunnison Valley scored the only run of the game on a sacrifice fly-ball hit by senior Creed Mogle to score sophomore Jake Sorenson. The team had three total hits.
“We purposefully [scheduled] games that we knew would be tough,” Sanders said.
When the teams met last Wednesday, Carbon was ranked third in 3A. They have dropped one ranking since the 1-0 loss and have a record of nine wins and five losses.
Meanwhile, Gunnison Valley is in first place in the state 2A rankings and is 11-1 on the season, including 5-0 against regional opponents.
Two of those games against North Sevier last week featured offensive potency from the Bulldogs.
“I kind of expected we would be one of the top teams,” Sanders said. “I wouldn’t say I’m surprised, but I’m happy about it.”
On Tuesday, Gunnison Valley wasted no time, scoring nine runs in the first inning and four in the next. Later in the fourth, Keisel sent a long ball over the fence to center field.
Sorenson did the same later in the inning. Sorenson and seniors Ryker Stewart and Payton Dyreng each had three hits in four plate appearances.
The game ended by the mercy rule after five innings.
On Friday, the Bulldogs scored at least one run in each of seven innings. They scored three in the fourth inning to tie the game at eight and pulled away in the fifth by scoring five runs.
In the overall positive week, Sanders specifically commended Stewart and Sorenson for consistent production.
“Ryker Stewart has been putting the ball in play every time he comes to bat,” he said.
He also noted that in a junior-varsity game, Sorenson hit a second home run of the week, which only bounced once before hitting the school building behind the fence.
Gunnison Valley hosted regional opponent Millard yesterday. Today, the team travels to play 3A Juab, and Friday, it hosts North Sevier again.
Millard’s record is 4-9, Juab is 14-1, and North Sevier is 5-7.