Basalt baseball makes regional field, to face Alamosa on Monday in Gunnison
The Basalt High School baseball team snuck into the 24-team Class 3A regional field, where it will be the No. 21 seed when postseason play begins Monday.
The Longhorns (11-5) hit the road on Sunday, only hours after the bracket was announced, in order to make it in time for their noon contest against No. 12 seed Alamosa (10-6) in Gunnison.
Senior Alonso Silva is expected to get the start on the mound for Basalt.
“He’s one of our two seniors, so we are looking for him for some good leadership and to give him an opportunity to finish strong this season,” BHS coach Dan Markoya said Sunday of Silva. “Everybody kind of came together throughout the season and especially getting the last couple of wins (Saturday against Aspen), that was big to make sure that we got in.”
The three-team region is being hosted by No. 5 seed Gunnison (13-3), which will face the BHS-Alamosa winner on Monday at 2:30 p.m. Basalt has not seen Alamosa this season, but did play Gunnison in a May 15 doubleheader, losing by scores of 10-9 and 17-7 to its WSL foe.
“We think Alamosa and ourselves are fairly similar. So we think we have a good ball club to play in front of us and hopefully we can take care of business and get another swing at Gunnison,” Markoya said. “Obviously they have a good squad, so playing them early (in the season) was probably tough for us. But we hung with them in one game and we are looking to get an opportunity to get a chance to play them again.”
Only one of the three teams will advance out of the single-elimination region to compete in the eight-team state tournament. That double-elimination affair begins Friday.
Markoya officially took the reins of the BHS program last spring, but the season was ultimately canceled because of the pandemic. He had been an assistant with the team prior to that.
With only two seniors this season and an influx of underclassmen with limited experience, there was a lot of unknown for Basalt entering this spring. So to have it all come together with a trip to regional play was as much as the coaches could ask for.
“Honestly, we thought we had a pretty good team last year and we just didn’t know what we had this year with freshmen coming in,” Markoya said. “We didn’t know much about them, hoping the freshmen last year, sophomores this year, were going to step up but didn’t know if that would happen either. And they did.”
Aspen (2-13) did not make regional play. Lutheran earned the No. 1 seed and will play in a region that includes No. 17 Delta. Moffat County is also representing the 3A Western Slope League as the No. 9 seed in regional play.
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One of the most significant moments in Crockett Williams’ football life came when he suffered a concussion. It was freshman year, and the now 29-year-old Coal Ridge High School alumnus was sidelined after getting his cage rattled.