Carson Valley senior all-star baseball players earn trip to state | RecordCourier.com
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Carson Valley senior all-star baseball players earn trip to state

Chuck Smock, Record-Courier sports editor

It was just a matter of time for the Carson Valley Senior all-stars in the District 1 championship game against Truckee on Sunday at Lampe Park.

Actually, it was a matter of timing.

Truckee pitcher Jake Bowheart had a perfect game going through three innings thanks to off-speed pitches that could best be described as slow and slower.

“We struggled throughout the game with the off-speed pitching,” Carson Valley manager Tim Curtis said after his team’s 3-2 win. “(Bowheart) threw an extremely good game. He didn’t walk anybody, he got ahead of hitters and he really mixed up his pitches well. We were looking for some fastballs to hit and we just weren’t getting them.”

In the fourth inning, Carson Valley figured out Bowheart enough to tie the game, 2-2. Tommy Hoyle doubled and Cal Lewis followed with a single. Evan Berry then hit a sacrifice fly that scored Hoyle before Matt Jacobsen singled to bring home Lewis.

Jacobsen started a two-out rally in the sixth inning that produced the winning run when he reached on an error. Mike Morris entered the game to run for Jacobsen and promptly stole second base and third base.

Ryan Curtis collected the game-winning RBI with an infield single.

Carson Valley will try to build on its success at the district tournament at the state tournament this weekend in Winnemucca. Carson Valley will play host Winnemucca in the first round Saturday. The Las Vegas representatives from District 2 and District 4 will play the other first-round game on Saturday.

And Curtis was happy to see his team tested by Truckee after it had won its first two games by a combined total of 48-0.

“It’s good to play a close game and really have to fight to win prior to going to the next tournament,” Curtis said. “I think if we had walked through all three games we could have come into the state tournament being a little flat. I think Truckee playing well and giving us a tough game was definitely a positive thing.”

A District 1 tournament that opened with Carson Valley’s 34-0 win over Valley Providence didn’t figure to end with a pitchers’ duel, but that’s exactly what happened.

Darren Muren struck out 11 batters and allowed only five hits in seven innings to earn the victory. He gave up two hits and hit a batter in the first inning, allowing Truckee to score both of its runs, but settled down quickly.

“It was a little rough in the first inning,” Muren said. “I just wanted to come out and throw strikes after that.”

Muren faced three batters more than the minimum in the final six innings. He set up Truckee batters with curveballs and changeups and then found the velocity to blow the fastball by them.

“Darren pitched for the (Douglas High) varsity a little bit this year,” Carson Valley assistant coach Bruce Jacobsen said. “When he starts a game, he has a tendency to throw too hard. He’s amped. Once he gets into the flow of the game, his breaking ball starts working a little better, his change (up) is a little slower and he can pitch a fine game like you saw (Sunday).”

And he got some help from his catcher, Matt Saylo.

Muren struck out the side in the bottom of the sixth inning, but gave up a double to Dan Hall and a single to Kevin Schlesinger to start the seventh. Schlesinger tried to steal second base, but Saylo erased him for the first out of the inning. Saylo threw out all three Truckee runners who tried to steal bases Sunday.

Truckee’s next batter was called on to execute a suicide squeeze bunt. Curtis, Carson Valley’s third baseman, fielded the ball cleanly and threw to Saylo, who blocked the plate, caught the ball and made the tag for the second out.

Muren then induced a weak grounder to end the game

By winning the District 1 tournament, the Carson Valley Seniors qualified to play in the state tournament, beginning this weekend in Winnemucca. No Carson Valley Seniors team has won a state championship.

“This group of kids have been together, basically, since they were 12 years old,” coach Jacobsen said. “This is going to be our best shot since 1996.”

Carson Valley advanced to the championship game by beating the same Truckee team, 14-0, in the winners’ bracket final on Friday.

Hoyle pitched a one-hitter and struck out four in a game that was shortened to five runs by the 10-run rule. Hoyle also blasted a three-run home run and finished the game 3-for-4 with four RBI.

Berry knocked in three runs and Jacobsen and Saylo each had two RBI.