BROOMFIELD — — Playing against a team that averages roughly 15 runs per outing, the Platte Valley baseball team was going to have to bring its A-game to the plate in order to compete with Holy Family in the Class 3A District 5 finals.
The Broncos were certainly capable, proving as much in their 15-14 extra-inning win over Peak to Peak in the afternoon’s earlier game. However, the visitors from Valley weren’t facing Zach Trombley in that contest.
The Holy Family senior was dominant, coming within one soft single of perfection. And with the Tiger hurler completely shutting down the Valley visitors, HFHS was able to cruise to a 10-0 victory in five innings, moving the team’s record to 19-1 on the season and earning trip to the state tournament in the process.
“Before the game I just had to really focus on getting in the zone, and that’s what I did when I took it to the mound,” Trombley said. “I just tried to focus everything on the strike zone, no balls, all the good stuff.”
Trombley proved to be nearly unhittable from the jump, striking out the side in the first inning thanks in large part to a fastball that Platte Valley’s hitters simply could not catch up with. He fanned six of the first nine Broncos hitters, ultimately finishing with seven strikeouts, and took the perfect game into the fourth.
The Tigers led 3-0 in the top of that frame when PVHS was finally able to get a runner to reach base. Broncos lead-off man Tanner Gettman put a grounder in play to the right side of the infield that rolled just slow enough to enable him to reach first before the Holy Family defense could make a play. But the hit did nothing to faze Trombley, who then retired the final six batters he faced.
While excellent on the hill, the pitcher didn’t have too shabby a game at the plate either. Batting cleanup, Trombley stepped to the dish in the bottom of the first with the bases loaded and singled in the first run of the game. He singled again in the fourth inning and was brought in to score a short while later when senior Jacob Tannon sent a three-run blast over the leftfield wall to make it 6-0.
Trombley also walked twice and finished with two runs and two RBIs.
“I wasn’t trying to do too much, I was just trying to barrel it up and get hits for my team,” he said. “I wasn’t trying to hit any over-the-mountain home runs, I was just trying to get on base so we can get them in.”
Holding the 6-0 lead in the bottom of the fifth, the Tigers generously decided to put an early end to the game before the rain picked up. Conor Stanley started the inning with a single, and Austin Brown then reached on an error. Devlin Granberg then walked to load the bases and forced Valley to make its second pitching change of the game.
The move to another reliever did nothing to slow downt the Tiger hitters. Trombley was issued another walk to bring one run and make it 7-0. Zach Dedin then nearly ended things with an exclamation point, sending a drive to center that fell just short of a walk-off grand slam. The senior ended up with a double that scored two and moved the Tigers with in one score of the 10-run mercy rule.
Tinnon quickly put that rule into effect with one final blow, singling in pinch runner Jose Martinez to make it 10-0.
Holy Family, awarded the No. 2 seed for the districts, now has its sights set on bringing home a championship from the state tournament for the second consecutive year. And while the Tigers almost certainly won’t be able to replicate Trombley’s success on the mound there, their staggering lineup gives them the ability to score against the best competition around.
“Offensively, pick your poison, (No.) 1 through 9 are going to be tough outs,” Holy Family head coach Eric Nakayama said. “Each one of them has their own kind of niche in what they do. 3, 4, 5 are going to hit for power, but you saw today our 7 hit for power.
“We’ve got a D.H. in the 8-hole, there’s not too many people that have (that). But when you’ve got the kind of lineup we do… It’s a special group of kids.”
The Tigers will take on Florence in the first round of state tournament action on Friday, 12:30 p.m. at Niwot H.S.
Contact Camera Staff Writer James Melillo at 720-252-3258 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Holy Family 10, Platte Valley 0
At Holy Family H.S.
Platte Valley 000 00 — 0 1 2
Holy Family 201 34 — 10 11 0
W — Zach Trombley. L — Nick Rodriguez.
Platte Valley hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Tanner Gettman 2-0-1-0, Cameron Maxey 2-0-0-0, Jacob Smith 2-0-0-0, Christian Clear 2-0-0-0, Nick Rodriguez 2-0-0-0, Riley Reed 2-0-0-0, Zach Barker 2-0-0-0, Jesus Lopez 1-0-0-0, Clay Smith 1-0-0-0. Totals 16-0-1-0.
Holy Family hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Conor Stanley 3-2-1-0, Austin Brown 2-2-0-0, Devlin Granberg 2-1-0-0, Zach Trombley 2-1-2-2, Jose Martinez 0-1-0-0, Zach Dedin 2-1-1-2, Jacob Tinnon 4-2-3-4, Chris McManus 3-0-2-0, Nick Kreutzer 3-0-1-1, Kennedy Phillips 3-0-1-0. 2B — Dedin. HR — Tinnon. SB — Granberg.
Platte Valley pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Nick Rodriguez 3.1-4-3-3-6-2, Christian Clear 1.2-5-6-5-2-0, Cameron Maxey 0-2-1-1-1-0 .
Holy Family pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Zach Trombley 5-1-0-0-0-7.
Holy Family 17, Pagosa Springs 0
At Holy Family H.S.
Pagosa Springs 000 00 — 0 2 2
Holy Family 338 3x — 17 12 0
W — Nick Kreutzer.