BLACKFOOT – After three straight doubleheaders that resulted in split series, the Blackfoot Broncos American Legion AA baseball team did something that they haven’t been able to do all season long, they swept a double header from the Twin Falls Blackhawks Tuesday.
And to make it all the better, they did it in fine fashion, winning with the kind of baseball that true fans of the game like to see.
They used solid pitching and good defense to win the first game 3-2 and came back in the nightcap to win the second game in walk-off fashion when Candon Dahle stroked a double into left field to drive in the winning run and take a 6-5 victory.
The first game was a classic pitcher’s duel between Blackfoot’s Jace Grimmett and Twin Falls’ starter. The two went toe-to-toe for five innings, before Grimmett was lifted by coach Liam Pope in favor of Candon Dahl who mopped up and earned the save.
Grimmett was solid throughout his five innings on the mound. He was ahead in the count for most of the game, throwing first-pitch strikes to 14 batters in his five-plus innings on the mound. He struck out four Blackhawks batters and for the most part did not let Twin Falls get on base and into scoring position.
Offensively, the Broncos were led by a pair of hits from Chase Turner who set the table a couple of times for other Broncos to drive in the runs. Bronco shortstop Carlos Pimentel did the damage in the bottom of the first, with a two-run single that got the Broncos on the scoreboard early.
The Blackhawks came back with a single run in the top of the second and again in the top of the third that tied the score at 2.
The Broncos, not to be outdone, rallied for their third run in the bottom of the third and the rest of the game was all about pitching and defense.
Both teams would end the game with five hits and one error, but as far as the game went, it was classic baseball, full of good defensive plays and strong pitching throughout.
The second game was more of the same and it was the same cast of characters that produced the win for the Broncos.
Pope sent Candon Dahle right back to the mound to start the second game after finishing up the first game in fine fashion.
Dahle began by throwing strikes just like he did in the opener and was sailing along. Dahle got immediate support from his offense as they scored single runs in the bottom of the first and the second innings and after three innings held a 2-1 lead over the Blackhawks.
That is when the roof fell in. Dahle had a walk, a hit batter and a hit to load the bases. The call went out to the bullpen and in came Daso Nappo, with the bases loaded and nobody out. He worked through the jam, and although four runs crossed the plate, Nappo did what he was supposed to do and that was limit the damage.
The Broncos went right back to work offensively, getting two of the runs back in the bottom of the fifth inning and cutting Twin Falls’ lead to 5-4.
That is the way the game would remain until the bottom of the seventh inning. With one run in and a runner on base, Candon Dahle came to the plate and promptly lashed a double to left field to score the winning run in walk-off fashion and give the Broncos the sweep.
Juan Pimentel picked up the win with a one-two-three seventh inning and the Broncos are headed off to see if they can gain a second sweep as they will tangle with the North Valley team from St. Anthony.
Game times were scheduled for 4 and 6 p.m. Wednesday afternoon in St. Anthony and the Broncos will once again be shorthanded in players as only nine will be able to make the trip, which will put pressure on an already depleted pitching staff.
With a pair of wins on Wednesday, the Broncos could move their season record to 10-13 and be in the midst of a four-game winning streak, and a streak of winning seven of their last 10 games.