Ticer’s walk-off homer sends Three Rivers to state title game
The Three Rivers Junior All-Stars never led in the semifinals game against Durango on Sunday until Jake Ticer stepped to the plate in the bottom of the seventh inning in a 6-6 tie against last year’s state champions, the Durango All-Stars.
Ticer crushed a 2-2 pitch over the right center field fence to put the Three Rivers Junior All Stars in the championship game Tuesday night.
Three Rivers played from behind the entire game. Durango jumped out to a 2-0 lead when pitcher Griffyn Hyson hit a 2-run home run to left. Durango increased its lead in the second when it scored two more runs despite only getting one infield hit in the inning. Three Rivers pitcher Cole Houston’s curveball was unhittable for Durango, but on two occasions pitches got past the catcher on a third strike, and the batter advanced to first. Durango actually had five outs that inning.
Three Rivers then cut the lead in half in the third. Sam Fitzwilliams doubled with two outs and was quickly knocked home by Ticer, who singled to left. Ticer later scored when Kaid Nieslanik reached on an error.
Three Rivers tied the game in the bottom of the sixth when Joey Beveridge smashed a two-run double to right field, before then coming in to pitch a quick top of the seventh and helped himself when he picked a baserunner off first.
That set the stage for Ticer, who had three hits Saturday, including a 3-run home run. Early in the at-bat Ticer launched a foul ball to right that would have been gone had it been fair. Two pitches later he made sure his timing was right and left no doubt as the ball sailed over the right center field fence to give Three Rivers the win.
In the 1 p.m. game, Sherrelwood defeated Arapaho 10-5. Durango and Sherrelwood will play Monday night to see who gets to face Three Rivers in the championship game Tuesday at 5 p.m.
For Three Rivers, Houston pitched four innings of two-hit ball, striking out seven, while Beveridge went 3-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs.
Fitzwilliams went 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored, while Nieslanik went 1-for-2 with two RBIs.
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As a new transplant to the area, each week I will feature a trail within the Garfield County limits. For this inaugural week, I’m highlighting Glenwood Springs’ own Atkinson Canal Trail.