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MILLVILLE — Beating the Riverhawks when Jaden Harris is on the mound is already a daunting task, and it’s nearly an impossible one when he receives some sufficient early offensive support.

Such was definitely the case on a windy Tuesday afternoon as Ridgeline plated two runs in the first inning and three more in the second, and never looked back in its 7-0 victory over Logan in a Region 11 baseball game. Harris threw a complete-game one-hitter and struck out 15 Grizzlies.

“It’s huge as a pitcher,” said Harris, a future University of Utah pitcher. “Mentally you’ve got a lot of confidence when you’re going out there and you know you’ve got a 5-0 lead. It makes it a lot more comfortable for you as a pitcher, so any time you can get up early, it’s a very good thing from a pitching (standpoint).”

The hard-throwing right-hander retired the side in third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh frames for the Riverhawks (8-5, 3-1), who prevailed for the fifth time in their last six outings.

“Yeah, I felt great,” Harris said. “I had control of all my stuff, was trying to pound the zone and my defense made plays when they needed to. So yeah, I just trusted in my stuff and was just out there dealing. It felt good.”

As dominant as Harris was, the Grizzlies (2-11, 0-4) were in good shape to take an early lead. Harris plunked lead-off hitter Vincent Rohrer — one of only two free passes the senior allowed — Kellen Roper laid down a sacrifice bunt and Kody Kirk sliced a single to right field, giving the visitors runners on the corners with one out. However, Harris was able to strike out the ensuing batter and induce a groundout to get out of the first inning unscathed.

Logan never seriously threatened to score the rest of the contest.

“If we could have scored there in that first inning, maybe the game turns out a little different, but (Harris) came out in the second inning and really got it rolling for them and we didn’t make adjustments, and he kept mowing us down,” LHS head coach Britton Coil said. “So yeah, credit to him and our guys have got to do a better job at the plate, for sure.”

Braxton Gill and Harris both singled in the bottom of the first for the Riverhawks, who took advantage of a Logan throwing error. Ridgeline also had a pair of base knocks in the home half of the second, including a clutch bases-clearing double by Kole Jenson that one-hopped to the fence in left-center.

“Yeah, it was good coming out of spring break to come out and put those runs up early and kind of get into a groove,” said RHS head coach Paul Bowler, whose team didn’t commit any errors. “That was a big hit Kole had to clear the bases with a double, and that first inning we strung a couple (hits) together and got a couple of runs. And then we were just kind of steady from there on, on the offensive side. But Jaden was great on the mound and he just got better as the game went on.”

Indeed, Harris was unstoppable from the second inning on as he fanned eight straight batters at one point and 12 of the last 15 Grizzlies he faced.

Meanwhile, Ridgeline manufactured a run in the fifth and sixth frames to keep Logan at bay. Gill and Evan Webb each scored twice for the Riverhawks, who used 14 different batters in the game, plus two speed-up runners.

“It was good to get everybody involved and keep everybody going, and you never know down the road the benefit that comes from the playing time (those guys) get, so that was good,” Bowler said.

Logan pitcher Jake Egbert settled down after the second inning and limited Ridgeline to one hit in the following three frames. The southpaw struck out four, walked two and plunked three.

OTHER GAMES

Mountain Crest rallied past Green Canyon for a 2-1 road win in the much-anticipated series opener between the two programs, and Sky View earned a gratifying 6-3 road victory over Bear River.

The Mustangs (12-2, 4-0) are now the only undefeated team in Region 11 play, while the Wolves (11-3, 3-1) are now tied with the Riverhawks for second place. Dax Roundy came through with a two-run single to left field in the top of the fourth for Mountain Crest, which got doubles from Marco Bellantoni and Kolmyn Fougler. Bellantoni also singled.

Braydon Schiess pitched a complete game for Mountain Crest. No. 16 scattered four hits, sat down 10 and walked three.

“Great baseball game with two quality pitchers on the mound,” MC head coach Stephen Hansen said. “We happened to put together a couple hits in one inning, with a big hit from Dax Roundy. Braydon Schiess bore down and got out of a couple of jams. It will be a battle again tomorrow.”

The other quality pitcher Hansen is referring to is Green Canyon’s Reece Hansen, who only yielded four base knocks in six and two-third innings. Like Schiess, Hansen fanned 10 and issued three free passes.

Caleb Petersen smacked a run-scoring double in the bottom of the third for Green Canyon.

Meanwhile, the Bobcats (3-9, 1-3) never trailed against the Bears (7-7, 1-3) as they put a three-spot on the scoreboard in the top of the first. Bear River got as close at 4-3 in the fourth frame, but Sky View scored twice more to slam the door.

Taydem Neal was unstoppable at the plate for the Bobcats as he went 4 for 4 with three runs, and was a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. The junior belted a solo home run in the sixth inning.

Alex Carling chipped in with two RBIs for Sky View, which got a pair of runs and walks from Cole Lundahl. Additionally, Lundahl pitched the first five frames for the Bobcats, while Taft Chambers came in and shut down the Bears in the sixth and seventh innings.

“Cole Lundahl came out on the mound and commanded the strike zone,” SV head coach Todd Phillips said. “Taft Chambers came in and finished it off by pounding the zone. We had some great defensive plays. You couldn’t ask for more from Taydem Neal going 4 for 4 at the plate with a double and home run, and he played great defensively. I’m proud of our boys.”

Preston was also in action Tuesday and defeated Century on the road in its district opener, 6-1. The Indians (6-5, 1-0) jumped out to a 5-0 lead after the first two innings and ultimately capitalized on nine Century errors, as the two teams played in less than ideal conditions.

{p class=”p1”}Braden Hess single and tripled for Preston, and Ashton Madsen doubled. Chayse Oxborrow, Zeth Groll, Tate Greene and Madsen all pitched for the Indians and limited the Diamondbacks to four hits and two walks, while striking out six.

{p class=”p1”}{span}”We just have to learn to play through it and be smart,” PHS head coach Kenny Inglet said. “Weather always, always factors in baseball.”{/span}

GIRLS LACROSSE

For the first time this season, all six Region 11 teams were in action on the same day.

It was another strong performance from Bear River (7-1, 3-0), which breezed to a 17-1 triumph over host Sky View (2-2, 0-2). Ridgeline also improved to 3-0 in region action as it edged Green Canyon 7-6 at home, while Mountain Crest reigned supreme over visiting Logan, 16-4.

The Riverhawks (6-1, 3-0) improved to 5-0 in games decided by one or two goals this season. Belle Quiggle and Ellie Goins each scored twice for Ridgeline, which got a goal apiece from Mady Nelson, Sydnee Seeholzer and MJ Topham.

“We definitely are happy to be 3-0 (in region), but they’ve been very close wins,” RHS head coach Aaron Quiggle said. “There is a lot of room for improvement and we must keep progressing.”

Mountain Crest (3-5, 1-2) dispatched of first-year program Logan (0-2, 0-2) for its first region win as a sanctioned team. Kamrie Wilkinson and Taryn Durham teamed up for nine goals for the hosts, and Wilkinson assisted on another.

Charly Peck contributed with three goals for the Mustangs, who got a pair of goals from Madi Henrie and Aisha Porter, plus an assist from Sarah Keller and Emmalee Leishman.

“The girls played an all-around good game,” MC head coach Jaycie Rindlisbacher said. “They were able to get ahead quick in the first half and play a steady game in the second half.”

Marisol Contreras converted on a pair of shots for the Grizzlies, who got a goal apiece from Zsofi Ugray and Karina Mendez.

Jason Turner is a sports reporter for The Herald Journal. He can be reached at jturner@hjnews.com or 435-792-7237.

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