TORRINGTON – The Torrington junior Legion baseball team rides into the 2019 ‘C’ State American Legion Tournament with a pair of wins over conference foe, Wheatland Lobos, on Saturday, July 13 at Jirdon Park.
The Tigers breezed through game one 16-0 in four innings.
Torrington scored eight in the first, seven in the second and one in the third behind a number of walks and errors by the visiting Lobos.
“The first game wasn’t much for us, but the second game, we had to scratch and fight,” coach Ben Desmond said.
In the second game, Wheatland jumped out to a 10-2 lead, but Torrington battled back to claim the win 13-10.
“We had to fight back all the way,” Desmond said.
The Lobos held a 10-2 lead through three innings, but the Tigers held Wheatland scoreless the remainder of the game.
Ayden Desmond came in and shut down the Lobo offense in the third, and Bryce Hager closed out the win to earn the save.
“The big highlight was Matt (Hellus),” Desmond said.
Hellus had two hits and scored two runs in the come-from-behind win.
The Tigers’ big inning came in the sixth after Torrington inserted the normal starting lineup into the ballgame.
Trailing 10-7, Torrington plated six runs to take the lead.
The Tigers (23-11) now turn their attention to the state tournament in Casper, starting on Wednesday, July 17.
“We’ll have some surprises for them if we can manage our pitching and have a little luck,” Desmond said. “They are ready. We can’t do anything else to get them ready. They’ve peaked and have come through with no injuries. They are in shape and playing in the right positions. We are a smart, fast team.”
Torrington will open the eight team, double elimination tournament with Cody at noon at Mike Lansing Field. With a win, the Tigers would play at 6 p.m., or with a loss, Torrington would play at noon. Either way, the Tigers will face either Jackson or Casper July 18.
Other state first round games
Gillette and Rock Springs open the tournament at 9 a.m., while Cheyenne and Powell will play at 3 p.m. and Jackson and Casper will wrap up day one at 6 p.m.
On Tuesday, July 23 at 7 p.m., the American Legion will be hosting a board meeting, and Ben Desmond encourages any interested players for next season to attend.
“We would love to have all those people from the (Little League) All-Star team come to the meeting to see what it is like for next year,” he said. “For more information, you can go to the Torrington Tiger Facebook page.”