Alta baseball misses the postseason in 2017
May 25, 2017 04:33PM ● Published by Billy Swartzfager
An Alta pitcher looks toward third in the 2017 season’s final game. (Billy Swartzfager/City Journals)
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The Alta baseball team didn’t have the greatest season; in fact, it was pretty rough. The Hawks finished the year with a 5-18 overall record, the good thing about that being that all five wins were over teams in their region. Their record was 5-9 in region play, good enough for sixth place, ensuring that Alta wouldn’t suit up for the state tournament. Last season, Alta barely made it into postseason play with a 7-11 record, good enough for a four seed in the tournament. The Hawks lost their first two games in last year’s finale.
Alta had a bit of trouble scoring runs through the early part of the season, turning less than three per game. The Hawks started the year against Juan Diego on March 10 with a loss, 4-1. Their following two games were on the road. Alta lost at Copper Hills on March 13, 3-1 and at Cottonwood on March 16, 11-1. Alta logged its first win against Orem on March 29, 4-2, and followed that with another win over Orem, this time as the visitor, on March 31, 10-6.
Alta lost the first two games it played in April to a tough Timpanogos squad. The Hawks fell 9-2 on April 3 and 11-1 on April 4. Alta then took a break from all of the region action and traveled to Las Vegas for the annual Bishop Gorman Desert Classic. The tournament was held this year April 15–18. Alta didn’t win a game in Las Vegas, leaving Nevada with a 0-3 record. Back in Utah, Alta continued its tough trek toward the end of the season. The Hawks lost two games to Skyridge and followed that with a pair of losses to Corner Canyon. Alta did finish April with a pair of wins over Timpview. Alta won on April 25, 11-1, and again on April 27, 11-1.
The regular season came to an end on May 9. The Hawks started the final stretch with two games against Provo. Alta lost the first game on May 2, 7-5, and the second as well on May 4, 5-3. Alta did get their fifth win, though. Alta finished the year with a pair of games against Mountain View. Alta won the first game of the two on May 8, 9-5, but lost the final game of the year May 9, 11-3.
However, the team got a lot of quality performances throughout the season. Team captain and senior McKay Dowdell, who pitched, played first base and outfield, led the team in stolen bases and RBI, while tying for the lead in home runs. Another senior, and also a captain, Cade Butterfield, led the squad in earned run average (ERA) on the mound and also swatted a couple home runs for a share of the team lead. Butterfield pitched and played in the infield. Senior catcher Same Martinez led the group in batting average and also spent time chewing up innings on the mound. Freshman Brant Butterfield led the team in innings pitches as well as logging the second lowest ERA on the team for 2017.