It wasn’t quite time to panic, Bonneville baseball coach Ryan Alexander noted last week after the Bees were swept in a three-game series by Idaho Falls, but there was some concern about how the team would respond after sputtering against the Tigers.
Not to worry. Bonneville had the perfect bounce-back remedy on Wednesday afternoon as the Bees opened another key series against Hillcrest.
Pitcher Randon Hostert is physically imposing on the mound, and when the big right-hander has his command and pounds the strike zone, he’s almost untouchable. That was the case against the Knights, who managed just three singles, two coming in the first inning off Hostert. The University of Utah-bound senior finished with eight strikeouts, no walks, and retired the final 15 Hillcrest hitters he faced on the way to a complete-game 2-0 victory at Bonneville.
“He was in the zone, he was aggressive and he had good stuff,” Alexander said, adding that Hillcrest hitters were patient at the plate and wouldn’t chase pitches. Even so, Hostert finished with 60 strikes on 77 pitches.
Hostert not only shined on the mound on Wednesday, he also knocked in both runs for Bonneville (13-5, 7-3 4A District 6).
Hostert’s performance overshadowed a stellar effort from Hillcrest starter Jace Hanson, who surrendered just one hit into the sixth inning. Unfortunately for Hanson, that one hit was a two-out RBI single to center in the first inning by Hostert.
Bonneville held that lead until the sixth inning when Alex Cortez singled and came around to score when Hostert lined a double off the left-field fence. Those were the only three hits given up by Hanson.
“You have to be sharp for sure, but you can’t try and be too perfect or too fine and overpitch,” Hostert said of the pitching duel that unfolded.
Alexander said there weren’t any big adjustments for the Bees to regroup, but hitters had a better approach at the plate in Wednesday’s game despite just getting the three hits. Hostert added he felt the team was back on a roll with the victory.
“We just tried to be loose and play our game and be confident,” Hostert said. “We’ve been here and played in big moments.”
Hanson struck out four in his six innings. He also finished 1 for 3 at the plate.
Hillcrest (12-7, 6-5) hosts Bonneville in a doubleheader today beginning at 3:30 p.m.
BONNEVILLE 2, HILLCREST 0
Hillcrest 000 000 0 – 0 3 2
Bonneville 100 001 x – 2 3 0
HILLCREST – Pitchers: Jace Hanson 6.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 4 K, 2 BB. Leading hitters: none.
BONNEVILLE – Pitchers: Randon Hostert 7.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 8 K, 0 BB. Leading hitters: Hostert 2-3. 2B: Hostert. RBI: Hostert 2.