4A state baseball roundup: Bishop Kelly, Skyview out of the hunt

Twin Falls and Lakeland will play today for the 4A state championship.

ccripe@idahostatesman.comMay 17, 2014 

NAMPA - It looked like an all-District Three final.

Instead, it's a no-District Three final.

The Bishop Kelly and Skyview baseball teams squandered leads in the late innings Friday at Rodeo Park in the 4A state semifinals.

Both lost, so they'll meet in the third-place game Saturday before Twin Falls and Lakeland battle in the final.

Twin Falls scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth inning, mostly against Bishop Kelly star Bowen Ogata, to erase a 3-1 deficit. The Bruins won 6-4.

Lakeland scored 12 unanswered runs across four innings to overcome deficits of 5-0 and 10-4. The Hawks beat Skyview 16-10.

"They just had timely hits," Skyview coach Ryan Bobo said. "Our pitchers were doing what they needed to - throwing strikes - and they just hit the ball around the yard."

Lakeland smacked 21 hits, 18 of them singles. Three players recorded three hits apiece, and Kenny Cooper and Logan Bruner each notched four.

Lakeland needed the offensive explosion because its starting pitcher, Bruner, didn't record an out and Skyview's Kody Graves hit a grand slam in the third.

"That team is all heart," Lakeland coach Jason Bradbury said of his squad. "We have not given up at all this whole stinkin' season. … I told them coming in in the (third) inning (down 10-4) that we've got so many innings we can double that score."

TWIN FALLS 6, BISHOP KELLY 4

Junior second baseman Cody Root put a surprise jolt into the Bruins' comeback with a go-ahead, two-run double in the bottom of the sixth inning. It was his first double of the season.

"Biggest hit I've ever had," Root said. "I'm more of a singles guy. When I hit it, I thought it was a little pop-up."

Bishop Kelly led 3-1 going into the sixth, but Ogata lost his feel for the strike zone after Tyler Walters singled to start the inning. Two walks and a single made it 3-2 and left the bases loaded with no outs. Enter Root, who only plays in certain defensive alignments but has pushed for more at-bats with his recent play. He smacked the ball in the gap in right-center field for the lead.

"The last couple weeks, whenever I've given Root an opportunity, he's been coming up with hits left and right," Twin Falls coach Tim Stadelmeir said. "He came up with a big hit for us, and that's what we needed."

The Bruins extended the margin to 6-3 - despite losing a run when Root was called out for missing home plate - and held on in the top of the seventh. Braden Stutzman, who came on in relief in the third inning, struck out Justin Marino with two outs and the bases loaded to end the game.

"If we were going to lose, that's the kid we were going to lose with," Stadelmeir said of Stutzman, "because that kid works harder than any kid I've ever coached. I knew he wasn't going to back down from that (situation). He was going to go right at them. They were going to have to be their best to beat him."

Ogata, who plans to play for Utah, was 3-for-4 with a home run and two RBIs. He is 6-for-8 with seven RBIs in the tournament.

COLUMBIA 5, BONNEVILLE 4

Bonneville pitcher Lincoln Clayton struck out 14, including nine straight early in the game, but his wildness proved costly. Columbia erased a four-run deficit in the fifth inning with a six-batter string that included two hits, three walks and a strikeout on which the batter reached on a passed ball.

The Wildcats won the game in the seventh on a walk, a hit batter and a Clayton error. Harrison Spencer scored the winning run.

POCATELLO 12, JEROME 1 (6)

The Indians erupted for eight runs in the fifth inning to roll into the consolation final. They accumulated 11 hits and nine walks. Brayden Nalley drove in two runs.

Chadd Cripe: 377-6398, Twitter: @IDS_BroncoBeat

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