Tiger baseball defeats Reed, heads to state
The Douglas High School baseball team is in the state tournament for the first time since 1989. The Tigers earned the berth with a 9-5 victory over Reed in the Class 4A Northern Zone loser’s bracket final Friday afternoon at Peccole Park on the campus of the University of Nevada. They did, however fall to the No. 2 seed out of the zone with a 13-5 loss to Carson in the championship final Saturday.
Douglas, 24-8 overall, will face Green Valley, the No. 1 seed out of the Southern Zone and one of the top-ranked teams in the country, according to a USA Today prep poll, Thursday at 12:30 p.m. at Peccole Park in the first game of the NIAA/U.S. Bank state tournament. The four-team double-elimination tournament will continue Friday with an elimination game, the winner’s bracket final and the loser’s bracket final and Saturday with the championship final.
Trent Tholen went the distance on the mound in Friday’s game, giving up nine hits and three walks while striking out four Raiders. The Tigers, who led 3-1 after three innings, broke the game open with a six-run rally in the bottom of the fourth.
Dave Jones went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and Beau Kruger hit a two-run double. Tom Joyner added two hits and an RBI and Matt Tretton added one hit and an RBI.
Also for the Tigers, Brady Ovard went 2-for-2, Steve O’Brien went 3-for-4 and Kenny Nicoll went 1-for-3.
Friday’s state-berth clinching win over Reed came on the heels of a tough 5-4 loss to Carson in the winner’s bracket final.
The Tigers scored three runs in the top of the first, but the Senators rallied for two runs in both the first and second innings and held on for the win.
Ovard, who led off the game with a double off a 401-foot sign in the right-center field gap, pitched a complete game. He gave up eight hits and two walks while striking out two.
Bruce Jacobsen hit a two-run homer as part of Douglas’ big first-inning rally. O’Brien added two hits and one RBI while Beau Kruger and Tretton each added one hit.
The Tigers’ loss to the Senators in Saturday’s final was the varsity program’s 11th straight defeat at the hands of their rival. But, the Tigers went down swinging.
Carson scored three runs in the first inning – and left the bases loaded against Douglas starter Justin Ray – and two more in the second off Loren Uber. It added one more in the fourth for a 6-0 lead.
Douglas drew within three runs by scoring two in the top of the fifth.
Beau Kruger led off with a single to left field and Dave Jones followed with a double to the gap in right-center. Kruger scored on a ground out to short by Tretton and Jones scored on a fielder’s choice with the hit coming off the bat of Nicoll.
Carson answered with three runs in the bottom half of the inning, extending its lead to 9-2.
To their credit, the Tigers battled back again in the sixth. They scored three runs on three hits and a hit batsman to cut the lead to 9-5.
Jacobsen walked with one out to start the rally. Beau Kruger singled to right with two outs to keep it going.
Jones was hit by a pitch to load the bases, and Tretton and Nicoll followed with run-scoring singles.
Carson responded once again, putting the game away with four runs in the bottom of the sixth.
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