The Giants finally got that elusive win Thursday night, beating Idaho Falls and shaking a 16-game losing streak in the process. It was the only win Jackson picked up in their own Teton Classic tournament over the weekend but it was well worth it.
Jackson 4, Idaho Falls 3
The Giants survived a scare and hung on to defeat the Tigers in a thrilling game to end the first day of the 3-day tourney.
A leadoff triple to start the game by Idaho’s Beau Anderson didn’t bode well for the Giants but it was simply the first of many times Giants starter Grant Parkin would wiggle out of trouble.
Jackson posted 3 runs in their half of the opening frame and nursed that lead all game until the 6th when they added an insurance run on sac fly off the bat of Steven Ashurts. Good thing, too.
With closer Austin VanSkike on to save the game, he was in a world of trouble with the tying run at 3rd (Coltin Lyda) and only 1 out. But VanSkike caught Grayson Thomas looking for his 5th strikeout in 2 innings of work.
Then, while the Giants were half-celebrating on the mound about the K, Lyda took off for home. It was a gamble for sure, trying to catch the Giants napping, and he almost made it if not for VanSkike catching sight of him at the last second and the perfect sweep tag by catcher Ayden Graylund. Final out of the game and victory secured.
Parkin (1-6) picked up the win. VanSkike secured his 2nd save.
Parker Bleggi went 2 for 4, Ayden Gralund was 2 for 3, Steven Ashurts was 1 for 2 with the game-winning RBI.
Elko 5, Jackson 4
Jackson carried some momentum into Friday’s game with Elko but one bad inning sunk their ship.
The Giants led 3-1 in a pitchers duel with Steven Ashurts hurling a beauty before he reached a 101 pitch count after 5 innings of work and Elko jumped on reliever Parker Bleggi. Three straight singles in the 7th, followed by two Giants errors led to a 4-run outburst for Elko.
Jackson managed 1 run in their half of the final inning but came up short.
Ayden Gralund had 2 hits, while Parker Bleggi, Austin VanSkike, Steven Ashurts all had one a piece.
Thunder Ridge 7, Jackson 3
Coach Jason Huggins went with starter by committee Saturday afternoon, sending Aaron Huggins to the mound to start. He lasted1 innings, throwing 36 pitches while walking 4. Then it was Owen Khanna who went 4 innings and Matt Fisher who finished the final 2. Huggins (2-3) was saddled with the loss.
Ayden Gralund continues to lead Giants hitters at the plate with a .393 average. He went 2 for 4 against Thunder. Austin VanSkike, who has struggled mightily at the dish, was 2 for 3 with a double.
But Jackson never led in this one and watched the visiting team take a 7-3 win.
Sugar 10, Jackson 1
The Diggers went right to work, chasing starter Austin VanSkike in the first innings with 4 runs on 4 hits and 2 base-on-balls. Warren Newton and Luke Moore mopped up but by then Sugar had the game in hand.
The Giants managed just 3 hits in the game—Parkin, Ashurts, and Huggins.
Post 43 does not have long to mull over the weekend. They hit the road Wednesday for a doubleheader with Casper before spending the weekend in Cody.
The Giants are now 8-32 on the season.