To win the Class 1A State Championship game, the Dove Creek High School baseball team knew that an outstanding performance would be necessary.
Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, such a performance was not to be as Dove Creek was blasted 17-1 by Caliche on May 15.
Playing in Lakewood, Colo., the Bulldogs struggled early, falling behind 2-0 in the first inning and 5-0 after two innings of play.
Meanwhile, the Bulldogs offense struggled, thanks in large part to an outstanding performance by Caliche starting pitcher Mitch Davison.
In all, Davison pitched seven innings, allowing just three hits, which were registered by Case Baughman, Alex Ogas and Jordan Ernst.
Ogas registered the Bulldogs’ only RBI.
Caliche’s biggest inning came in the bottom of the seventh, when a 10-1 lead was stretched to 17-1.
“We ran into a tough team,” said Bulldogs manager Curtis Garver. “They had a tough pitcher and we just couldn’t get our timing on him.”
Even with the loss, Garver expressed satisfaction with his team’s success, which he credited to a difficult schedule that forced the Bulldogs to compete day in and day out.
“We have a lot of good teams in our league,” said Garver. “We never see a 1A baseball team until the District Tournament. Playing those (league) teams makes us better.”
Garver also noted that his team’s success would not have been possible absent strong contributions by seniors Tyson Smith and Nick Jones.
“They showed a lot of leadership,” said Garver. “We’re going to miss those guys, but we’re going to keep working. We’re still fairly young.”
Overall, the Bulldogs concluded their season with a 7-15 record overall.