NIWOT — Offense was a tough commodity for the Broomfield baseball team to come by earlier this season. But facing down some to the top arms in Colorado and California appears to have paid dividends for the Eagles.
The eighth-ranked Class 4A team’s bats have been red hot as of late, a fact Monday that hit Niwot right where it hurts — the loss column.
The Eagles collected their second mercy-run win over Niwot, sweeping their Northern League foes for the season.
Broomfield started battering its hosts in the third inning and did not stop until they hung a 14-1, six-inning win on the Cougars.
“Ever since we came back from our (spring break) tournament in San Diego, we’ve been hitting the ball pretty consistently,” Eagles catcher Ben Martinez said. “Everybody is doing their job.”
Martinez was certainly doing his own against Niwot (4-9, 3-5). The catcher had the Eagles (6-3, 5-0) soaring from start to finish.
The junior went 3-for-3, scored three runs and batted in three runners. Martinez got the run parade started in the third, collecting his team’s first hit of the afternoon with a leadoff double. But it was his last poke of the game that did the most damage to the scoreboard.
The catcher sent two runs home in the fifth with a single to center.
“My first at bat, I got that first-pitch fast ball,” Martinez said. “Then in my second and third, it was just waiting the pitcher out for the fastball.”
As much damage as the junior did, it only got worse when Broomfield started dipping into its dugout.
The Eagles clinched the win in the six with its reserves coming up as big as the team’s starters. And no one came up bigger than Pat Lalancette in chewing up the four pitchers Broomfield faced in the inning. The junior’s first at bat was a three-run home run of the left-field wall.
The top-to-bottom hitting might have shocked the Cougars, but was more than expected by Garren Estes.
“The more you see live pitching, the better you’re going to be and we’ve been lucky, because we’ve seen some quality pitching,” the Broomfield coach said. “We saw the two (NCAA) Division I kids from Legend and two quality guys out in San Diego right after. So, it was just a matter of time.”
Tough as the finish was, Niwot did not roll over and die. The team almost appeared as if it was ready to go tit-for-tat with the Eagles.
The team swung right back, right after Broomfield took its initial lead in the third. Tanner Morris led off the bottom of the third with a double and made it home off a single by Bryan Meek. But after the inning, most of the team’s offense evaporated with Brandon Bailey buckling down on the mound.
“They’re a championship caliber team and they’re playing like it,” Morris said. “We didn’t play a bad game, they can just hit the ball.”
Having the bats complement Broomfield’s strong defense could not have come at a better moment The wind appears to be at the Eagles’ backs just in time for the team to take a bite out of the meat of their conference schedule.
“We still have some tough teams, tough,” Estes said. “We see Mountain View at the end of the week and Longmont is playing fantastic.”
Broomfield 14, Niwot 1
At Niwot H.S.
Broomfield (6-3, 5-0) 003 227 x — 14 11 1
Niwot (4-9, 3-5) 001 000 x — 1 6 3
W — Bailey (4-1). L — Meek (0-1)
Broomfield hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Oliver 3-1-1-0, Panicucci 1-0-0-0, Aresdorf 3-0-0-0, Lalancette 1-1-1-3, Lockwood 4-1-1-0, Perez 3-0-1-1, Sena 0-1-0-0, Gable 2-2-0-0, Bailey 2-3-1-1, martinez 3-2-3-3, Osgood 1-0-0-0, Garcia 3-1-1-1, Rucco 0-0-0-1, Estes 2-1-1-1, McCulley 1-1-1-1. Totals 29-14-11-12. 2B — Martinez, Estes, Lockwood. 3B — Bailey. HR — Lalancette (three runs in sixth). SB — Sena.
Niwot hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Meek 3-0-2-1, Kopplinger 3-0-2-0, Katechis 3-0-0-0, Kinnison 3-0-0-0, Sarosi 3-0-0-0, Kirkpatrick 3-0-0-0, Morris 2-1-2-0, Hawthorne 2-0-0-0, Caruso 2-0-0-0 Totals 24-1-6-1. 2B — Morris. 3B — None. HR — None. SB — None.
Broomfield pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Bailey 6-6-1-1-0-7.
Niwot pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Meek 4-6-5-4-1-3; Kinnison 1 1/3-1-2-3-3-1; Sypher 0-3-3-3-0-0; Katechis 0-0-3-2-3-0, Caruso 2/3-1-0-0-0-2.