Competing at the Ignacio Tournament last weekend, the Dolores High School baseball team won its second game of the season and competed well against several larger schools.
Playing its first game of the tournament against Sargent on March 17, Dolores pulled ahead 3-0 in the second inning, extended its lead to 6-1 in the fifth and held on for a 6-5 victory.
According to Bears manager Rusty Hamilton, senior Brandon Ward started on the mound and pitched five strong innings. Justin Purkat pitched the final two to secure the victory.
“We played good baseball ... and the teamwork was the biggest key for us,” he said.
Later on March 17, Dolores faced off against Salida and lost 12-2 in five innings.
Sophomore Dakota Smith started on the mound for the Bears and pitched two innings before being replaced by Seth Nicholas.
“They are a strong batting team, and we were probably a little tired,” Hamilton said. “They consistently hit the ball where we weren’t.”
Dolores played its final game against Pagosa Springs on March 18 and narrowly lost, 6-4.
Neil Farias started for the Bears and surrendered four runs in the first inning and a run in the second before being replaced.
Playing his first varsity game, Cameron Chavez provided a spark, allowing just one run in six innings. The sophomore also came through with a three-run double in the second inning, which cut Pagosa’s lead to 5-4.
“(Chavez) is very calm on the mound,” said Hamilton. “He’s a strong smooth baseball player. He came through in a big way.”
Dolores, 3-2, plays Monticello at home on March 30, then goes to Paonia on April 1.