The regular season of American Legion Baseball for the Laramie Rangers concludes with a conference doubleheader on Wednesday versus Gillette.

The twin bill starts at 3 p.m. at Cowboy Field.

Laramie (24-30, 4-8) needs to win one game to secure the No. 5 seed at next week’s state tournament in Jackson. If the Rangers lose both, they fall into a three-way tie with Jackson and the Cheyenne Hawks.

Manager Aaron Lozano doesn’t mind the pressure on his team with these last two games.

“I think it’s good pressure. Going into the state tournament playing a couple of meaningless conference games would have more of a detrimental effect. This sort of helps get these guys in that mindset (of crucial games) a few days early and be ready to go.”

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The Rangers have dropped 10 in a row after a 10-game win streak. They went winless at the Gabe Pando Memorial Invite in Fort Collins last weekend. Laramie lost to Fort Collins, 5-4, and the Parker (CO) Lightning, 13-1, last Thursday. That was followed by a pair of shutouts. They fell 11-0 to Colorado Rogue last Friday and 8-0 to the Casper Oilers last Saturday. In match play last Sunday, the Rangers dropped a 10-6 game to Windsor (CO).

Lozano said he feels his team is close to snapping out of their skid.

“I do feel we’re close, especially on the offensive side. In that last game against Windsor, we started to put together consecutive hits and had a little bit more traffic on the bases. It’s an inopportune time to have the bats go silent, but we’re confident these guys will be ready for state.”

Gillette (48-19, 8-4) is trying to secure the No. 3 seed at the state tournament next week.

Lozano expects the same old Gillette.

“They going to hit the ball. Their pitchers are going to throw hard. They’re going to throw strikes, and they’re going to be crafty. One of the things we saw a few years ago here (at home) was a suicide squeeze that ended up being the difference in the ball game. Just those little things they try to do to catch you off guard, and they often do. That’s just a testament, not only to Coach (Nate) Perleberg, but the way he has his players execute.”

KOWB radio will broadcast both games starting at 2:45 p.m. You can listen live on AM 1290, through the KOWB app, online, and through smart speakers.

Laramie Rangers Baseball Firecracker Tournament 2023

Laramie Rangers Legion Baseball in action at the Firecracker Tournament in Cheyenne during the 2023 season.

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