LAMAR – The Fort Lupton Bluedevils found the hits hard to come by in their Class 3A District 3 playoff game against the Lamar Savages Saturday, May 10 at Merchants Park.
The No. 29 seed Bluedevils were held to just two hits in an 11-0 loss in five innings to the fourth-seeded Savages. With the loss, Fort Lupton ended the season with a 5-15 record while Lamar went to 16-4 overall.
Lamar’s No. 1 pitcher, Darin Cook, dominated and held Fort Lupton hitless through the first three innings and registered seven strikeouts. He allowed only one BlueDevil on base in his three innings of work.
Cook struck out the side in the top of the first inning before he walked his counterpart, in pitcher Clint Allen, in the top of the second.
Cook then got John Lujan to fly out and struck out Manny Ledezma. With Lorenzo Antuna at bat, Allen was thrown out stealing second base to end the inning.
In the top of the third, the Lamar junior right-hander retired the Bluedevils in order with three more punch outs.
“Lamar’s first pitcher threw strikes, and we looked a little overmatched,” said Fort Lupton coach Brandon O’Field. “We were just kind of a step behind.”
Allen allowed four runs in the first inning and then gave up six runs in the second. The Savages added one run in the third. Allen took himself out of the game with a sore elbow with the score 8-0 and the bases loaded with one out in the third.
Ledezma came on in relief and struck out the first batter he faced before giving up a two-run single. He got out of the inning with a strikeout.
Lamar made a pitching change and brought in Brandon Reed. He retired the first batter he faced before giving up the Bluedevils’ first hit to Ian McPeeck on a fly ball to left field. With two outs, Allen came to bat and ripped a ground ball to left field for a double.
With Fort Lupton threatening with runners at second and third, Reed struck out the next batter to keep the Bluedevils off the scoreboard.
In the top of the fifth, the first two batters for the Bluedevils were retired on a ground out and a strike-out. Reed issued a walk to Devon Garcia, but came back to strike out Christian Angel to end the game.
“We tried to push home some runs in the fourth to extend the game, but it didn’t happen,” said O’Field. “But this opportunity to come down to Lamar and play in this game was a good experience for our kids. Our top two players areophomores and, in the future, we will be a whole lot better.”
O’Field gave credit where credit is due.
“Lamar did everything that they were supposed to in game like this,” he said. “Their first pitcher threw a lot of strikes, they didn’t make any mistakes and hit the ball. That’s usually a winning combination.”
Seniors playing their final game in a Bluedevils' uniform were Ian McPeek, Jeff Merritt, Colton McCutchan, and Alex Reckard.