BLACKFOOT — The Blackfoot Broncos opened the home portion of their 2012 schedule on Friday afternoon as they swept an abbreviated double header with Century by winning game one 6-0 and then followed that up with a 2-1, three inning win in the night cap.
"The pitchers came out and did a great job of hitting their spots tonight," Blackfoot head coach Kenny Dahle said. "We talked about starting ahead and they each did just that which was a big key for us today."
Shawn Whitehead got the start in the first game and "Nuke" turned in a fabulous effort despite pitching with a steady drizzle pounding on his head, working three innings of 2 hit baseball before turning the ball over to Cody Evans.
Evans was equally as impressive in his three innings of work as he picked up the win with a 1 hit effort of his own. Russel Osborn closed the seventh inning for the Broncos as the trio combined for the shutout.
Offensively the bats were a little quieter than the Broncos 31 hit explosion at Pocatello earlier in the week but in the end, timely hitting led to the victory as the Broncos erupted for 4 runs in the home half of the fifth inning. In the inning Blackfoot sent 10 hitters to the plate with Cody Averett leading the uprising off with a sharp single. The big blow in the inning came from Jaron Katseanes who laced a 2-RBI single which scored Cole Mansanarez and Colby Pearson who had each worked walks in the frame.
"We started a little slow with the bats and maybe that was the rain or something," Coach Dahle said. "I was really happy with the way that we were able to find ways to get on base and then picking up those key hits when we needed them was huge."
Clutch hits proved to be the key in the night cap as well as the Broncos rallied in the bottom of the third after a Century run in the top half of the inning gave them the 1-0 lead.
Jeremy Leavitt led off the inning with a base on balls and advanced to third courtesy of a Cody Evans single. Mansanarez plated both of those runners with a 2-RBI, 2 out single to the right center field gap for the 2-1 lead.
The game was then called after it was decided that the lighting was insufficient to continue.
"Defensively I am really happy, especially with the juniors that I have who are filling in for some departed seniors," Coach Dahle said. "Tuff (Mathie) is playing lights out at second for us. Colby (Pearson) at short is as solid as you can get and Russ (Osborn) is a stallion at third."
Defense was certainly a huge positive for the Broncos as they committed just one error in the ten innings played on Friday.
Blackfoot (3-1) will return to the diamond next Wednesday when they open conference play by hosting Bonneville for a 4 P.M. start.
Blackfoot 6, Century 0
Century 000 000 0 - 0 5 3
Blackfoot 000 042 x - 6 5 0
Century - Palmer 1-4, Jugenburg 2-2, Leiby 2-3 2B. pitching: Terry 4IP 0R 1H 5K 2BB, Briley (L) 2/3IP 4R 3H 0K 2BB, Martin 1/3IP 2R 0H 0K 3BB, Lyle 1IP 0R 1H 2K 0BB 1HP.
Blackfoot - Mansanarez 1-3, Pearson 1-3 RBI, Osborn 1-3, Katseanes 1-3 2RBI; pitching: Whitehead 3IP 0R 2H 4K 2BB; Evans (W) 3IP 0R 1H 1K 4BB; Osborn 1IP 0R 2H 1K 0BB.
Blackfoot 2, Century 1 (3 innings darkness)
Century 001 xxx x - 1 3 0
Blackfoot 002 xxx x - 2 2 1
Century - Jugenburg 1-2 RBI, Lyle 1-1, Leiby 1-1; pitching: Scarborough 3IP 2R 2H 4K 1BB.
Blackfoot - Evans 1-2, Mansanarez 1-2 2RBI; Pitching: Johnson 2 1/3IP 1R 2H 2K 2BB, Osborn 2/3IP 0R 1H 1K 0BB.