GILLETTE, Wyo. — All of the runs were scored in the fifth inning in Cheyenne’s 3-2 victory over the Billings Royals in a loser-out game at the Class AA Northwest Region 7 American Legion baseball tournament Saturday.
The Montana-Alberta state AA champion Royals finish their season 39-25. The Royals won their first two games at regionals, before falling in the undefeated semifinals Friday night. Overall, Billings was 2-2 at the tourney.
For the Royals, it was a year where they accomplished many of their goals.
“I’m really proud of the guys,” said Royals coach David Swecker. “They had a great year and accomplished a lot of our goals. I couldn’t be more proud of them. We believed in each other. They trusted me and believed in me and I did the same with them, too.
“Every season we talk about our main goals and it is to win the city and beat the Scarlets in the series, win the conference and win the state. We accomplished all three of those goals. You get at regionals and are playing with house money at that point. We put ourselves in a great spot and unfortunately a play here, or a play there, and who knows what happens, but that’s baseball.”
Kruz Slevira hit a one-out double for the Royals in the fifth and Jaiden Turner singled. A throwing error on Turner’s single allowed Slevira to score and Turner also advanced to third on the play. Bryce LaForest singled up the middle to score Turner and it was 2-0 Royals.
Cheyenne, the Wyoming state champion, answered in the bottom half of the fifth with three runs.
The Sixers (67-11) first batter of the inning reached on an error. After a ground out, Cheyenne hitters produced three straight singles to score two runs. With two outs, another single by Cheyenne pushed across the team’s third run of the frame.
Overall, Billings totaled four hits and Cheyenne five. Each team committed two errors. Billings left four runners on base and Cheyenne six.
Sy Waldron, Slevira, Turner and LaForest had Billings’ hits. LaForest notched the lone RBI for Billings.
Slevira and Turner also reached base by drawing a walk.
The Royals’ Davis Mosier pitched the complete six innings, allowing three runs (one earned). He didn’t walk a batter and struck out five. Mosier did hit three batters with a pitch.
Cheyenne’s Bailey Applegarth was the starting pitcher, throwing the first 4.1 innings. Applegarth scattered three hits and two runs (both earned). He walked one and fanned nine.
Reliever Wyatt Haught picked up the win for the Sixers. He threw the last 2.2 innings, limiting the Royals to one hit, while walking one and striking out two.