CHEYENNE – The Torrington Tiger senior Legion baseball team split a pair of doubleheaders with the Cheyenne Hawks and the WESTCO Zephyrs last week.
On Wednesday, the Tigers returned to conference play in Cheyenne, dropping both games of the doubleheader by one run, 7-6 and 6-5.
“We left Cheyenne feeling like we gave a couple away,” Tiger manager Rob Mortimore said. “We had several opportunities in several innings in both games to push runs across.”
In game one, Torrington jumped out to a 4-0 lead through three and a half innings before Cheyenne began its comeback.
The Tigers got RBIs from Sam Firminhac in the first and Blake Lofink in the second.
In the top of the fourth, Caeden Riley led off with a walk and Tristian Kingsley tripled, while Lofink’s sacrifice fly made the score 4-0.
“We had a chance to really open it up and extend on a 4-0 lead,” Mortimore said. “Give Cheyenne credit, they executed when they had to. They were tough outs. They battled at the plate and made our pitchers throw some extra pitches, fouling off balls.”
In the home half of the frame, Cheyenne scored three runs with two outs.
The Hawks continued the comeback in the fifth with four more runs to take a 7-4 lead.
Torrington got two back in the sixth with RBI singles from Lofink and Cameron Murphy.
The Tigers were unable to complete the comeback over the final two innings, leaving runners at second and third bases when the final outs were recorded.
Jackson Jones went 3-for-4 at the plate, while Kinglsey was 2-for-3.
Torrington left nine runners on base in the loss, snapping a seven-game win streak for the Tigers.
In game two, Torrington once again grabbed an early lead in the first inning courtesy of an RBI single from Firminhac.
The lead was short-lived as Cheyenne plated three in the bottom of the second.
Torrington chipped away at the deficit over the final four innings, but Cheyenne scored three more in the bottom of the fifth to pad the lead.
The Tigers scored on a passed ball in the sixth, and Jones drove in Murphy on a ground out to cut the deficit to 6-5.
Torrington had runners at the corners when Cheyenne recorded the final out of the game.
Murphy went 2-for-3 with two runs scored.
“We are a better team than we displayed, but that’s the way baseball goes sometimes,” Mortimore said. “The good thing about baseball is there is always another day.”
As a team, the Tigers left eight runners on base.
On Saturday, the Tigers returned to the field looking to get back in the win column.
Torrington made the short drive east to Scottsbluff to face the WESTCO Zephyrs, and the Tigers came away with 8-3 and 8-5 wins.
“It was really nice to see,” Mortimore said. “For our guys to come out and bounce back right away and put it behind them and get back into the win column says a lot about their character and their maturity at this point in the season.”
In game one, WESTCO scored the first run of the game with a bases loaded hit batter to make give the Zephyrs a brief 1-0 lead.
Kinglsey led off the third with a double, and the Tigers also got hits from Nick Sherbeyn, Murphy, Firminhac and Deagan Keith to take a 4-1 lead.
Torrington never trailed the remainder of the game.
The Tigers added two more runs in the fourth and fifth innings to pull away for the five-run victory.
Murphy tallied two hits, to go along with an RBI and a run scored while also picking up the win, pitching 3 2/3 innings, striking out three. Southeast High School graduate Tate Carson was tagged with the loss for the Zephyrs, striking out three over four innings.
In the second game, Torrington looked to put away WESTCO early with four runs before the Zephyrs recorded the first out of the game.
WESTCO got two runs back in the second, but the Tigers pushed their lead back to four with runs scoring courtesy of a balk and a wild pitch.
The Zephyrs made one more push in the sixth, scoring three, but Torrington finished off WESTCO with two runs in the seventh on a double by Gabe Mitchell and a Sherbeyn single.
Riley closed out the game with three strike outs in the bottom of the seventh.
Sherbeyn led the Tigers at the plate with a 4-for-5 game, while Riley and Murphy added two hits apiece.
As a team, all nine Torrington batters tallied at least one hit in the win.
Jones was credited with the win, working five innings, giving up only two earned runs.
The Tigers have another busy week as the team enters the midpoint of the schedule. On Tuesday, Torrington hosted the Cheyenne Hawks. On Friday, the Tigers will host a triangular with Douglas and Rocky Mountain (Colo.). Torrington will face Rocky Mountain at 5 p.m. and Douglas at 6, while Rocky Mountain and Douglas square off at 3 p.m. On Saturday, the Tigers host Laramie at 1 p.m.
“It’s a really busy weekend for our guys, and we are in the dog-days of it right now,” Mortimore said. “I’m looking forward to this week. It’s going to be a big week for baseball here in Torrington.”