The Kuna Kavemen varsity baseball team participated in the Buck’s Bag’s tournament over the weekend ending up with a 2-2 record. On Thursday the Highland Ram’s pitching proved to be too much handing Kuna their first shutout this year. The lefty Aaron Pope from Pocatello only gave up two hits and recorded 12 strikeouts while pitching a complete game. However Jorge Garcilazo was equally effective on the mound for the Kavemen pitching 6 shutout innings and giving up only three hits himself.
In the top of the seventh with Kuna’s relief on the mound Highland bats caught fire and before they were finished they had scored 9 runs on 7 hits. With three up and three down in the bottom of the seventh the game ended for Kuna with a 9-0 loss.
Friday was much kinder to the Kavemen as they won both games against teams from Ontario and Burley. Whether by coincidence or scouting Ontario put their lefty ace on the mound with almost as much success as Poky’s holding the Kavemen hitters to only one run in 6 innings. Kuna scored that run in the first when Coburn singled, Cavanaugh doubled, and Lawrence drove in Coburn with a single to left. In the top of the 6th however Ontario managed to score a run when their lead-off hitter walked and eventually came around to score on no hits.
With a 1-1 tie the game went in to extra innings and was finally decided when Croft scored the winning run on a ball that went between the legs of Ontario’s third baseman. Croft threw 7 innings for the Kavemen getting seven strikeouts and giving up only two hits. Coburn recorded the win, however, after coming in relief in the eighth and holding Ontario to no runs in two innings pitched.
Next up was the Burley Bobcats. Stauffer got the win on the mound but it was the Kuna hitters that took control of the game early on scoring 14 runs in the first two innings, eventually mercy ruling the Bobcats 16-4 in five innings of play. Wasden had a big day going 3 for 3 at the plate and was joined by teammates Croft (1), Coburn (1), Cavanaugh (1), Lawrence (2), Everheart (1), Erickson (1), Stauffer (1), McLean (1), and Markin (1) who all left their impression on Burley’s pitching. They also displayed the discipline they hadn’t in the previous two games by earning 9 walks to go along with their 13 hits.
Saturday was another nail biter with the Idaho Falls Tigers eventually coming out on top 4-3. After giving up 4 runs in the first inning Colt Conley found a rhythm and pitched 6 shutout innings to complete the game. Unfortunately that would be all the Tiger’s would need because Kuna could only muster two runs in the first and one in the fifth leaving them one short. The fifth started promising for Kuna with a lead-off double for McLean followed by a singles from Croft and Coburn which loaded the bases with no outs. Cavanaugh then scored McLean with a sacrifice fly to center. Kuna would eventually load the bases again before leaving them stranded as Idaho Falls defense held for the final out. Coburn and McLean led the hitting with two a piece while Croft, Everheart, Wasden, and Erickson each had one.
— Story submitted by Craig McLean