Del Norte baseball team splits with Custer County

Del Norte High School shortstop Tylor Gallegos throws out a Custer County base runner in the first game of a doubleheader Saturday at Del Norte. The Tigers won the first game 3-2, but lost the second 8-6 (Courier photo by Ken Hamrick).

DEL NORTE – The Del Norte High School baseball team played its final home games of the regular season on Saturday as it hosted a doubleheader with Custer County Saturday at the Tigers’ new facility.

The teams ended up splitting the twinbill. The Tigers rallied late to win the first game 3-2, but the Bobcats recovered to win the nightcap by a score of 8-6.

Game 1

After the first two innings went scoreless, the Tigers scored a run in the bottom of the third inning. Brennan Velasquez singled and he stole both second and third. Ben Parra also singled to drive home Velasquez.

The Bobcats responded by scoring two runs in the top of the fourth. Chad Lewis singled, and A.J. Stotzfus drew a walk. Weston Jones singled home Lewis with the tying run, and after Aiden Zehr walked to load the bases, Ty Baumgardner singled to bring home Stoltzfus with the go-ahead run.

Del Norte regained the lead by scoring twice in the bottom of the sixth. Parra got on first on an error, and another error put him on third. Nick Atencio then hit an inside-the-park home run for a 3-2 Tigers’ lead.

Custer County put two runners on base in the top of the seventh, but they were left stranded.

Nick Atencio started on the mound for Del Norte but did not figure in the decision. He allowed two runs and seven hits and he struck out nine and walked four. Parra finished the game and he was the winning pitcher, He gave up no runs and two hits and he struck out none and walked none.

The Tigers had five hits. They were singles by Brennan Velasquez, Dante LeBlanc and Parra, a double by Tytus Atencio, and a home run by Nick Atencio. Nick Atencio led in RBIs with two.

Game 2

Custer County took the early lead in the second game with two runs in the first. Zehr and Garrett Olomon both singled and Zehr got to third on an error. Baumgardner then struck out, but the ball got past the catcher and Zehr came home on the play.

Olomon came home on Lewis’ sacrifice fly for a 2-0 Bobcats’ lead.

Custer County scored four more runs in the second. Joey Vergilio singled and scored second, and he scored on Zach Fischer’s single. Zehr followed with a single, and Baumgardner singled home Fischer for a 4-0 lead.

Ben Penkoff brought home Zehr with a single, and Baumgardner scored as the Bobcats successfully executed the double steal.

Del Norte scored its first two runs in the bottom of the second. Tytus Atencio walked and he went to second on an error. Brennan Velasquez singled home Tytus Atencio, and after Malachi Gallegos walked, Brennan Velasquez scored on a balk to cut the deficit to 6-2.

The Tigers scored another run in the third. Tylor Gallegos walked and stole second. He went to third on Tytus Atencio’s groundout, and Tylor Gallegos scored on Reece Velasquez’s ground out.

Custer County scored once in the top of the fourth. Zehr was safe on an error and another error put him on third. He come home on Baumgardner’s single.

Del Norte scored twice in its half of the fourth. Malachi Gallegos and Craig Williams both singled, And Malchi Gallegos scored on Nick Atencio’s groundout, and Williams came home as Gage Trujillo reached on an error to cut the Custer County lead to 7-5.

The Bobcats scored another run in the sixth. Olomon singled and stole second and he took third on Baumgardner’s single. Olomon scored on Ben Penkoff’s sacrifice fly for an 8-5 advantage.

The Tigers attempted one more late rally in the seventh. Tylor Gallegos singled and stole second, and he scored on Reece Velasquez’s single. Del Norte put another runner on base, but they were left stranded as the game ended.

Parra was Del Norte’s starting pitcher and he took the loss. He allowed eight runs and 11 hits and he struck out two and walked two. Tytus Atencio pitched the final inning and he retired all three batters he faced.

The Tigers had seven hits and they were led by Malachi Gallegos who went 2-4. Reece Velasquez led in RBIs with two.

What’s next

Del Norte (13-8) finished in a three-way tie for second place in the Class 2A Southern Peaks League with Monte Vista (12-11) and Custer County (13-9) as all three had 8-4 league records.

The Tigers will conclude the regular season today with a doubleheader at fourth-ranked Rye. The first game begins at 1 p.m.

Del Norte 3, Custer County 2

Custer County    000   200   0 – 2   9   2

Del Norte         001   002   x – 3   5   1

Olomon (L) and B. Penkoff. N. Atencio, Parra (6) and B. Velasquez. HR – DN: N. Atencio (6th inn., 1 on, no outs).

Custer County 8, Del Norte 6

Custer County   240   101   0 – 8  11   3

Del Norte         021   200   1 – 6    7   5

Vergilio (W), Stotzfus (4, S) and B. Penkoff. Parra (L), T. Atencio (7) and Trujillo.

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