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Area high school baseball teams use spring break to sharpen skills

Baseball players get chance to shine in warm-weather locations


South metro-area baseball teams are anxious to open league play after tuning up with spring break trips to Arizona, California and Florida.

Twelve teams from area schools compiled a 30-19 record in out-of-state games during spring break.

Highlands Ranch went 4-1 in the Coach Bob National Invitational in Phoenix.

“Our trip went well,” said Falcons coach Joe Gleason. “We feel like we saw competition that will prepare us for league play back here in Colorado.”

In the Falcons’ final tournament game, senior Zac Dammel pitched 2.1 innings of scoreless relief to pick up the win in an 8-6, eight-inning win over Long Beach Poly. Sean Arnold collected three hits in the victory.

“It was nice to be able to play five days in a row without a worry of weather and on very nice fields,” Gleason said. “Playing five days in a row also gave us an opportunity to see all of our players in a competitive varsity setting.

“As a team we were able to spend time together and have team events. We had a lot of fun together and grew as a group. Overall, it was a great experience for our kids and we grew as a program because of it.”

Castle View, which plays Regis Jesuit in its Continental League opener on April 9, won three of four games in the Coach Bob tourney.

“We played some good teams,” said Sabercats coach Jose Diaz. “The trip was helpful. We got to play, see new teams, the weather was good, our kids were exposed because there were scouts at the games and the competition was there.

“We play the same teams over and over here, so we got to see other teams from out of state and that keeps us sharp.”

Arapahoe went 3-0 in Arizona and was scheduled to open Centennial League play April 3 against Mullen.

In a 19-12 win over Thurston (Springfield, Oregon) on March 29, Spye Turnbeagh entered the game with the bases loaded and no outs but worked his way out of the inning without giving up a run. He pitched three inning to earn his first varsity victory.

Heritage was 2-0 in a pair of games in Phoenix. Justin Perry pitched three innings of scoreless relief in a 7-4 win over Potomac (Dunfries, Virginia) on March 26 and the Eagles scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh in a 6-5 victory over Gresham (Oregon) on March 27.

The Eagles open Continental League play April 9 against Highlands Ranch.

Douglas County headed south early and went 3-1 in four games in the Coach Bob National Invitational. The Huskies will be idle for 22 days before facing Chaparral in its Continental League opener on April 13.


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