Long non-region slate prepares Miners for league baseball battles
May 08, 2018 01:25PM
● By Josh McFadden
By Josh McFadden | [email protected]
Region realignments and the addition of Class 6A led to significant changes in all sports this school year. The Bingham baseball team has felt that in its non-region schedule too.
While the Miners competed in the seven-team Region 3 a year ago as part of Class 5A, Bingham moved to Region 4 of 6A this season, where just five schools reside. Bingham plays each region foe three times (all in back-to-back-to-back triple-headers) this season, meaning the Miners will play only 12 league games this season.
Meanwhile, the Miners filled up their schedule with plenty of non-region contests. The team had up-and-down results as it prepared for Region 4 competition.
Bingham entered region play on April 10 against Lone Peak with a 6-7 record. The Miners won their first three and six of their first eight contests, but ran into some stiff competition at the National Classic tournament in Placentia, California, over Spring Break April 2–April 5. There, Bingham went 0-4 against two teams from California, one from Florida and one from Arizona. Three of the losses were by three runs or fewer.
Bingham was happy to finally get into region action at home against Lone Peak. The three-game series against the always-tough Knights went in favor of the Miners, which took two of the three games from Lone Peak to start off 2-1 in Region 4.
The Miners won the first game against the Knights by the count of 7-3, thanks largely to an offensive barrage of 15 hits. Carter Sofonia and Nick Burdette each hit doubles, and pitcher Derek Soffe got the win on the mound. Bingham broke things open in the fifth inning with four runs. The only negative stat on the day was the Miners’ six errors.
Following a 13-7 loss to Lone Peak the following day, Bingham bounced back with a 3-0 shutout on April 14. Pitcher Peyton Jones allowed just two hits the entire game. Offensively, the Miners got all three of their runs in the first inning.
Bingham has had its moments at the plate and in the field. The team pitched three shutouts through April 14. During that span, it also held opponents to three runs or less seven times. Meanwhile, Bingham had six games of at least seven runs from the start of the season through April 14.
Individually, pitcher Joey Dixon won four of his first five games on the mound, while Soffe was 3-1 during that time frame. Burdette hit a home run and a triple, while Nick Stevens added two triples and three doubles of his own.
Four of the top five teams in Region 4 will qualify for the double-elimination 6A state tournament. Bingham wraps up the regular season with a three-game series with American Fork May 7, 8 and 9. State begins May 15 with first- and second-round games at the sites of higher-seeded teams. On May 19, the rest of the tournament heads to Utah Valley University.Last season, Bingham won Region 3 with a 15-3 record. The Miners won three games at state before falling in back-to-back contest to Cottonwood and Lone Peak, respectively.