With the state title on the line, Helper American Legion Baseball stepped up to the challenge and claimed their second straight championship by defeating St. George 9-0 on Friday night.
After losing to St. George Thursday 8-0, Helper knew what needed to be done to secure the title. The team played solid baseball, eliminating errors, which plagued them the day before. With the tables turned, Helper easily defeated St. George for the title.
Cole Fossat pitched a great game from the mound and took a no hitter into the seventh inning. “The second batter of that inning doubled to left center to break up the no hitter, but nonetheless, Cole pitched a great game,” explained Helper manager Jeff Cisneros. “Soon after, he struck out a batter and the celebration of a second title began.”
Helper scored one run in the second inning on a single by Marco Mota. The team added another run in the third inning on a double by Ridge Nielson.
The game broke wide open in the fourth inning as Helper scored five runs to take a 7-0 lead. “Two walks to start the inning and a sacrifice bunt by Colton Greener set the stage for a two RBI single by Dillon Wilstead,” Cisneros explained. “An error allowed Nielson to reach first, then Bryce Blackburn tripled Nielson and Wilstead home.” Blackburn then scored on a sacrifice fly by Fossat.
Two more runs in the fifth pushed Helper ahead of St. George, 9-0 and secured the state title victory.
“I cannot say enough about how this team worked all season to get to this point,” Cisneros stated. “We had a lot of ups and downs, but they really bought in to playing team ball by the time the state tournament rolled around.”
Cisneros would like to thank everyone for their support and for traveling to Logan to watch the team play. “Several Price American Legion players along with their coach Willie Ellington were there supporting us,” he indicated. “Thanks as well to all the businesses in our area for helping us out once again this season.”
At the end of the tournament, Helper was awarded the state championship trophy and Colton Greener was awarded the state American Legion Scholarship Award. Dominic Rondinelli received the defensive player award and Fossat was named the state tournament MVP.
Helper will now compete in the Western regional tournament beginning Aug. 7 in Arizona. The team will face the New Mexico state champions that afternoon. The game can be followed live at www.legion.org/baseball.
Team Runs Hits Errors
St. George 0 1 4
Helper 9 9 2
2b- Nielson(H), Howard(S)