Raiders split conference pair with LovellJun 23, 2017 By Scott Akanewich, Sports Editor
Cody Frazier hit a grand slam in a 24-6 road victory against the Mustangs.
After their bats had a brief hiatus in Sheridan on Tuesday, the Riverton sticks were alive again as the Raiders visited Lovell for an American Legion doubleheader on Thursday for a pair of contests against the conference opponent Mustangs.
One Raider who was raring to go was Cody Frazier, who hit a grand slam in a nine-run third inning on the way to a 24-6 win in the second game.
Frazier was 2-for-5 with five runs batted in, as the visitors wasted no time in lighting up the Lovell pitching staff, including back-to-back nine-run frames in the second and third innings, building a 22-4 advantage.
Brodie Roden also homered for the Raiders, then added another in the nightcap, tying teammate Alex Fabricus for the team lead with five on the season, a blast which impressed Raiders manager Troy Brown due to the nature of the circumstances surrounding it, he said.
"I told our guys we're not a power-hitting team, so go up there and hit line drives and ground balls, especially with Brodie and his speed," said Brown. "If we do that, the power will come. For example, he hit a hard single first time up, then lined one 340 feet down the line."
Kyren Higgs contributed a hat trick of doubles to the cause, while Brock Hinkle drove in four runs, along with three each for Dillon Fabricus and Dalton Lassiter as part of a 20-hit attack in a game which was called after five innings due to the 10-run rule.
Roden also put in a strong shift on the mound, hurling a complete game, while throwing 86 pitches and striking out three Mustangs.
After defensive miscues had cost his club the opener, Riverton manager Troy Brown's club rebounded with a vengeance, he said.
"After that first game, the boys were certainly very fired up," said Brown. "They really picked each other up."
Lovell 10, Riverton 9
In the first game, the Raiders' bats were warm, but their gloves were ice cold in a 10-9 defeat which saw them commit five errors leading to eight unearned runs.
However, despite their misadventures in the field, Riverton nevertheless held a 9-7 lead heading into the home half of the seventh.
Frazier was on the mound, having moved over from his customary third base spot, to close out the game for starter Dalton Baldes, who had gone 5 1/3 innings, throwing 118 pitches and striking out 11 in the process.
Brown lauded the efforts of both his pitchers.
"Dalton's effort on the mound was tremendous," he said. "He mixed in his curve just enough to keep them off balance and Cody did what he needed to do. Both of then deserved a better fate."
Frazier retired the first two hitters in the seventh, but that was where the trouble began.
A hit batter and a walk put the tying runs on base, bringing Lovell's T.J. Abraham to the plate.
Abraham hit a ground ball to third, where Dillon Lange - ironically enough in Frazier's stead at the hot corner -- was charged with an error on the potential final out of the game.
At that point, with the bases loaded, the home side smelled blood in the water and went in for the kill, with Dawson Forcella pulling the trigger on a game-tying double to make it 9-9.
Another free pass once again loaded the bases for Jeremy Schneider, who quickly fell behind in the count, 0-2.
However, the next pitch from Frazier hit Schneider to force in the winning run.
Riverton (18-10, 6-4 A West) will next travel to Rawlins for a non-conference doubleheader on Saturday, then go to Cody for another pair of league games against the first-place Cubs, in a matchup which will go a long way toward determining postseason seeding and one which Brown is confident his troops are ready for, he said.
"Our expectations are to go up there and win both games," said Brown. "We just have to play our game."
As far as any mental block which stands in the way when the Raiders face their longtime nemesis, Brown believes perhaps now is the time to blow it up, he said.
"I think our guys feel good about it," said Brown. "We're confident about what we can do against them with some of the things we've accomplished this season."
Riverton 4 9 9 0 2 x x -- 24
Lovell 0 1 3 2 0 x x -- 6
Riverton - Roden, 3-4, HR, 3 RBI; Higgs, 3-3, 3 2B, 3 BB, 2 RBI; Frazier, 2-5, HR, 5 RBI; D. Fabricus, 2-3, 3 RBI; Lange, 0-1; Draper, 2-3, 2B, 2 RBI; Baldes, 1-4; Lassiter, 2-4, 3 RBI; Muehler, 0-0; Hinkle, 2-3, 2B, 4 RBI; Fisher, 3-5, 2B, RBI.
Lovell - Dickerson, 1-3, RBI; Forcella, 1-3; Schneider, 2-2, 3B, 2 RBI; Hill, 0-3; Horracks, 1-2; Abraham, 1-3, 3B, 2 RBI; Vasquez, 1-1; Hessenthaler, 01, RBI; Gayton, 0-1; Wambeke, 0-3.
Riverton 2 0 1 6 0 0 0 -- 9
Lovell 0 0 2 3 0 2 3 -- 10
Riverton - Roden, 1-3, HR, 3 RBI; Higgs, 2-4; Frazier, 3-3; D. Fabricus, 0-4; Draper, 1-3, RBI; Baldes, 1-4, 2 RBI; Lassiter, 1-2; Hinkle, 0-2; Fisher, 2-3.
Lovell - Abraham, 0-4; Forcella, 3-5, 2B, HR, 5 RBI; Schneider, 0-3; Hill, 0-1; Horracks, 1-4, RBI; Dickerson, 1-4; Hessenthaler, 0-1; Rivera, 0-3; Vasquez, 1-3; Wambeke, 1-3.