Baseball: Pitching carries Holy Family to state tournament

Tigers looking to advance further at state with veteran staff

Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer
Wes Siefken has limited opponents to the tune of a 1.20 earned-run average in 2019. He is part of a team staff that has a 2.22 ERA heading to the Class 4A tournament.
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The Holy Family Tigers won their regional tournament they got to host last weekend, but not before getting a scare from Denver North in the first regional game.

Facing a hard-throwing pitcher in Josue Rivera, the Tigers needed extra-innings to get the 2-1 walk-off win to reach the regional final, where they defeated Centaurus 11-4 to qualify for the Class 4A state tournament for the second consecutive season.

“To get through that Saturday always feels good,” Holy Family coach Marc Cowell said. “It’s the scariest weekend of the season for us.”

The two wins last weekend saw Holy Family improve to 20-5 and stretch its win streak to seven heading to the double-elimination tournament, which begins Friday in Colorado Springs. Their first opponent at state will be Cheyenne Mountain (21-4), and they’ll be looking for a measure of revenge as the Indians were the team that ended their season at state last year.

Holy Family has leaned on a veteran pitching staff anchored by two ace pitchers in the starting rotation. The team as a whole comes in with a 2.22 earned run average. Weston Siefken leads the team with 58 1/3 innings pitched and a 1.20 ERA. Jordan McFarland is the other ace with a 2.52 ERA in 41 2/3 innings pitched.

“Pitching is a strength and something we’ve relied on,” Cowell said. “With guys like Wes or Jordan on the mound, it gives us a good chance to win.”

Collin Kringlen and Izaak Siefken are two more guys in the rotation that could see time in relief and add to the veteran core Holy Family uses on the mound.

Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer
Among Holy Family senior Collin Kringlen’s 31 hits in 2019 are 11 extra-base hits, including three home runs.

At the plate, the Tigers have a balanced lineup that is hitting .309 and features nine players with double-digit RBIs. Roughly one-third of their hits go for extra bases with 47 doubles, six triples and 11 home runs. They have been able to win both the low-scoring games and ones where the offenses put together the hits and runs.

The state tournament will also see teams Holy Family is familiar with, as Tri-Valley League members Erie and Fort Morgan qualified in regional upsets last weekend.

“We heard they were saying in the preseason that the Tri-Valley League would be a bit down this year because the teams were so senior heavy,” Cowell said. “To get three teams there says a lot. I think we’ll all make some noise.”

Holy Family will play its games this weekend at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs baseball facility. First pitch versus Cheyenne Mountain is scheduled for 9:30 a.m.

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