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2A baseball: Sophomore turns in stellar pitching performance to lead Gunnison Valley past Grand County for title

Published May 13, 2017 8:22 pm

2A baseball • Bartholomew strikes out 8 in 52⁄3 innings.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2017, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Kearns • Gunnison Valley didn't need much in the Class 2A baseball state championship game Saturday.

Just stellar pitching, an offensive outburst and a little more rest than Grand County.

Gunnison Valley rode sophomore starting pitcher Parx Bartholomew and senior Gage Mogle in relief to the 9-4 victory at Gates Field. It is Gunnison Valley's 10th baseball state championship and first since 2012.

"Hard work doesn't always give you success, but it's a great indicator," Gunnison Valley coach Jared Anderson said. "And those kids have paid the price. They've worked hard, and this [title] is theirs."

Bartholomew earned the win, going 52⁄3 innings while allowing three runs on five hits.

Mogle entered in the sixth when Bartholomew hit 109 pitches, one fewer than the maximum allowed. Mogle allowed one run on four hits.

Bartholomew "was unreal," first baseman Ty Hill said. "He came to play today."

Gunnison Valley (23-3) worked the pitch-count rule in its favor, using its ace, senior Drew Hill, on Friday to advance to the title game. Bartholomew looked every bit Hill's successor Saturday, recording eight strikeouts.

"I'm proud of him," Anderson said. "I'm proud of his effort, and I'm proud of what he did right there, stepping up for us knowing that was his game. We planned on this all year long. We said to Parx, 'Here's the deal. This is our game plan with the pitch count. We're gonna go [with] our one guy, we're gonna go our two guy. You've got the mound in the state championship game if it works out that way.'"

Bartholomew and Mogle were two of five Gunnison Valley players with multiple hits. Hill led the way, going 3 for 4 with two RBIs and a double.

"It was unbelievable," Mogle said. "Knowing that you have that solid of a defense behind you makes pitching to those guys feel like just another day playing baseball. …

"This morning, you woke up and you know that it's game day, it's championship day. You're just going out there and playing for that championship. You dream about doing it. Now that we've done it, it's unreal."

Gunnison Valley took control with a five-run fourth inning. Three straight walks loaded the bases to start the inning. Bartholomew drove in the first run with a single, followed by an RBI single by senior third baseman Kyle Petersen, a two-RBI double by Mogle and an RBI single by Hill.

Grand County (21-5) finished a season marred by tragedy. Sophomore Connor Denney died March 5 in a single-car accident in Moab that also killed a classmate and injured three others. Grand County honored Denney this season with a funeral on the field the morning of its March 14 game.

"They came together. I'm proud of them," Grand County coach Jared Meador said. —

Gunnison Valley 9, Grand County 4

R Grand County starter Josh Jones strikes out six.

>> Grand County's Alec Williams, Caden Noyes and Brayden Schultz each record two hits.

>> Gunnison Valley's Jared Anderson never has lost a state title game in his coaching career. This is his fourth championship.






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