Brad Cochi/ BoCoPreps.com
LONGMONT — The Holy Family baseball team just hit a critical stretch of its season that will likely determine this spring’s Tri-Valley League champion.
Especially with Windsor (Class 5A No. 6 ranking) looking more beatable after losing two straight, the Tigers, ranked sixth in 4A, are poised to take their shot at the conference title with a strong run over their next five games which end in a two-game set with Windsor next week.
Knowing the importance of every upcoming game, the Tigers (11-4, 7-1) made sure to kick their determinant stretch off with a convincing 12-2 road victory over Skyline (7-8, 4-6) on Friday.
“This just gives us more confidence that we have the ability to win all our games,” Tigers senior Emmanuel King said. “Coming into the season, we knew that Windsor was going to be the team to beat. Now that they’re coming up on our schedule, we’re looking more and more at them but it’s important for us to be playing our best when we get there so we have to focus on us in every game.”
Against Skyline on Friday, the Tigers scored a pair of runs in the top of the first inning. Starting pitcher Collin Kringlen took it from there, allowing four hits and striking out four batters over four scoreless innings. Tigers reliever Matthew Delgado pitched a scoreless fifth and Zach Becker allowed two runs (one earned) over the final two innings.
Skyline starter Joel Hesse tossed a pair of scoreless innings following the two-run first before his outing took a turn for the worse in the fourth. The Tigers added two runs in the fourth inning and rallied for five more runs on five hits and an error in the fifth to earn their seventh straight win.
“We didn’t hit quite as well as we thought we should because their pitcher was throwing a little slower than we were expecting and that threw us off,” King said. “But we kept our approach and kept looking for fastballs, and we started to get it going better as the game went on.”
With the Tigers leading 10-0 in the sixth inning, Friday’s game was on the verge of ending early by way of the 10-run mercy rule. But with runners at the corners with two outs, Skyline’s Ethan Drewes reached on a fielding error and Juan Chaparro scored to keep the Falcons alive and ensure the contest would reach the full seven innings.
The Tigers and Falcons won’t complete their season series until May 7. In the 10 days between now and then, the teams will play a combined 11 games.
Up next for Holy Family, the Tigers will play at Berthoud on Saturday. Skyline will hit the road to take on Greeley Central on Monday.
Holy Family 12, Skyline 2
At Skyline H.S.
Holy Family (11-4, 7-1) 200 251 2 — 12 16 1
Skyline (7-8, 4-6) 000 001 1 — 2 5 4
W — Kringlen. L — Hesse.
Holy Family hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — McGowan 4-1-3-2, Lim 1-0-0-0, Baker 3-1-1-2, I. Siefken 0-1-0-0, Becker 4-0-1-1, W. Siefken 0-0-0-1, Col. Kringlen 3-0-2-0, Ziegler 1-0-1-0, Callaway 3-0-0-0, Welsh 2-0-0-0, Delgado 4-2-2-1, Cord Kringlen 1-0-0-0, King 3-1-1-2, Cooney 3-2-2-0, Knudsen 1-0-0-0, Martinek 3-3-3-1, Perez 0-1-0-0, Hammond 0-0-0-0. Totals 36-12-16-10. 2B — Baker, Delgado, King, Martinek. SB — Perez 2, Cooney.
Skyline hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Bridwell 3-1-1-0, Elwood 4-0-1-0, Chaparro 3-1-1-0, Wi. Drewes 3-0-0-0, McGregor 2-0-0-0, Hart 1-0-0-0, Gutierrez 2-0-1-0, Scott 1-0-0-0, E. Drewes 3-0-0-0, Wy. Drewes 3-0-1-0, Chavez 2-0-0-0, Knudsvig 0-0-0-0, Chavez 0-0-0-0, Hesse 0-0-0-0. Totals 27-2-5-0. 2B — Bridwell. SB — Bridwell.
Holy Family pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Col. Kringlen 4-4-0-0-1-4, Delgado 1-0-0-0-0-1, Becker 2-1-2-1-3-2.
Skyline pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Hesse 5-13-9-8-0-2, Chavez 2-3-3-2-1-2.