Berthoud Weekly Surveyor | Covering all the angles in the Garden Spot

Spartans win walk-off thriller, classic baseball

By: Dan Karpiel | The Surveyor | May 20, 2021 | Baseball

The conditions could not have been more ideal for a spring baseball game but the way the game ended was what made it a perfect day.

The Berthoud High School (BHS) baseball team hosted Riverdale Ridge last Thursday afternoon and won in walk-off fashion, 5-4, in the bottom of the seventh frame to notch their second win of the year. It was an expertly played game by both sides, classic baseball through and through that featured good pitching, some terrific play in the field, timely hitting and a thrilling conclusion.

“I’ve said it since before the season started, we’re not a team that is going to challenge the fences this year, we have to play our kind of ball and can’t miss opportunities when they come our way,” said Berthoud Manager Buddy Kouns after the game. “Everyone who stepped on this field today did something to help us get this win, I’m proud of our kids tonight.”

The Spartans entered the seventh frame trailing 4-2 and got their comeback started right away. Senior Cameron Vasco earned a free pass to first base to begin the frame and advanced to second when Nolan Young notched a one-out single to bring the tying run to the plate for Berthoud. Connor Jorissen then walked to load the bases for sophomore Tobey Fraley.

Fraley laced a single right up the middle of the diamond, scoring both Vasco and Young to knot the score at four and shift the momentum entirely to Berthoud’s side. Fraley and Jorissen and advanced to second and third, respectively, on a passed ball to put two baserunners in to scoring position with just one out. Senior Lane Pirkey then worked a walk-in just five pitches off a clearly rattled Grant Wroblewski who was on the mound for Riverdale.

All senior Kellan Oliver had to do was put the ball in play. While Oliver’s game-winning hit – a high chopper that bounced right in front of Wroblewski – may not have been the prettiest hit, it was all the Spartans needed to get Connor Jorissen home from third and clinch the win.

“Kellan knew he had to put the ball in play and he did it,” Kouns said. “With the bases loaded and one out there was a force all-around, he’s been one of our guys for a while now and he turned in a terrific at bat there to win it for us.”

Oliver and Pirkey scored Berthoud’s first two runs of the game back in the fourth frame, each getting aboard on walks, advancing when Matt Jorissen was hit by a pitch and coming around to score on a single from Adrian Short.

Short turned in a strong showing on the mound for the Spartans, allowing only three earned runs on four hits in five innings of work. Connor Jorissen came on in relief when Short approached the pitch count limit after five and turned in an excellent two innings of work, allowing just a single hit and zero runs to pick up the win.

Berthoud will travel to Greeley to take Northridge on Thursday afternoon before returning home to Jack Sommers Field at BHS to face off with Mountain View on Saturday.

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