All-stars play for memories
RIFLE – It’s the memories of the guys, not the game, that means the most for these all-stars.To the 27 players chosen to play in the 2006 Western Slope League All-Star Baseball Classic, that was the best part of Tuesday’s affair at Cooper Field.”You get to know them a little bit. Laugh and joke around – it’s pretty fun,” Rifle High grad Eli Snead said of his new teammates.The game was pretty fun, too. The combined squad of players from Rifle, Moffat County and Delta hung on for an 8-7 win. The outcome was kind of surprising, considering the group of Bears, Bulldogs and Panthers built up a 6-1 lead by the third inning against the combined best from Glenwood, Eagle Valley, Palisade and Steamboat.And, while like all All-Star games, the competition is manufactured – don’t think the guys on either team didn’t play hard.The Demons’ Beau Chicoine struck out four hitters in two-plus innings of work. Afterwards, as an infielder, he turned a nifty unassisted double play to snuff out a potential rally. Later, Tim Cashel had a defensive gem of his own when he made a fine running catch in the outfield.But it’s friendships – past and present – that each player will cherish the most from Tuesday’s contest. “I’ll probably remember all the buddies that I have. All the friends I made, and all the good times I had with them at Rifle. We had a lot of fun together,” Snead said.He’ll probably also remember getting a chance to play with guys he’s gone head-to-head with throughout high school.”You definitely develop a relationship with them,” Snead said.Bryce Enewold felt the same way.”Eli’s a real hard worker and he gives it his all. He helps out the younger kids all the time, and he’s a great guy all-around,” he said of Snead. Enewold also found out that he shared a lot with his one-game teammates.”We’re really a lot alike,” he said. “Everyone talks baseball, then you get to really meet the person and you find out how cool they are.”Each of the former Bears are looking forward to playing summer ball. The next step afterwards is cloudy for both.Enewold is undecided about his college plans. He’s looking to continue his baseball career at the junior college level. Snead currently plans on attending Western State in the fall but is leaving his options open.
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