The Laramie Rangers are continuing to play good baseball after they swept the 2017 Mustang Round-up wood bat tournament in Fort Morgan, CO last weekend.

The Rangers scored 10 runs in three of their victories and also won a low-scoring game with pitching and defense.

Laramie (28-15) has won five straight games and manager Brandon Ruckman said the team did a great job last weekend.

“Pitchers limited walks, batters had smart and productive at-bats, and defense didn't make any critical mistakes. We took advantage of other team's mistakes and were aggressive on the bases. Wood bat tourney, so pitchers need to pitch to contact, stay up-tempo, and let the defense do their job.”

The Rangers opened with a 10-6 comeback win over Sterling, CO. Laramie trailed 5-2, but scored eight runs over the next three innings for the victory. A fielding error by Sterling led to two runs that tied the game at five. Reid Baty’s RBI single provided the go-ahead run in the fourth. With a 7-6 lead, Laramie added three runs in the seventh that iced it. Albert Steiner led the offense with three hits. Ramon Gomez worked four innings on the mound for the win.

In their second game last Saturday, Laramie held off Northridge from Greeley, CO 3-1. The Rangers took the lead with a run on a passed ball in the first inning. After Northridge tied it in the third, Laramie scored on two more passed balls for a 3-1 lead and held on. Baty worked five innings and was the winning pitcher. The Rangers overcame just three hits and four errors defensively.

In Sunday’s action Laramie began the day with a 10-1 victory over the host Fort Morgan Mustangs. The Rangers plated five runs in the first inning. Steiner delivered an RBI triple, Baty an RBI double, plus an error and a pair of RBI-singles from David Coulthard and Caleb Eaton put Laramie in command. A 12-hit attack was led by Baty’s two doubles and two RBI’s. Steiner went four innings for the victory on the mound.

In their final game, the Rangers got past Mead, CO 10-6. A four-run fifth inning gave Laramie the lead for good. Logan Pickard had the go-ahead RBI-single in the frame. Blake Moore got the win in relief, while Matt Smith led an 11-hit attack with three hits and drove in a pair. Laramie also took advantage of three Mead errors.

Ruckman also said his squad was tested in different ways throughout the tournament.

“Every game presented a different set of challenges. A couple games (Sterling and Mead) we got behind and the club had to respond with good team at-bats (hitting behind runners to get them into scoring position and then scoring runners). Team had to demonstrate patience against Northridge. The lefty pitcher was very good but wild. Players had to work the pitch count and take advantage of passed balls and wild pitches. Batters came alive against Fort Morgan with a bunch of extra base hits. Truly shows how multi-dimensional this team is and how far they have come as a team this season.”

The Rangers return to action today with a game at the Casper Oilers. It was changed to a single, nine-inning game, instead of the originally scheduled twin bill. First pitch is at 6 p.m. from Mike Lansing Field in Casper. Laramie is not back at home until July 18.

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