Cheyenne Mountain cherishes the journey in 4A championship game loss to Ponderosa | High School Sports


Cheyenne Mountain coach Mark Swope can’t assistance but believe back to midseason, when, following an great start off, his Purple-Tailed Hawks lost 5 online games in a seven-game stretch.

At that second, he said, the year could have long gone both way. Cheyenne Mountain could have ongoing not playing to its prospective and dropping online games, or, the Hawks could get the job done more durable, and flip issues all around.

They chose the 2nd choice.

“We had to reevaluate what our goals looked like,” Swope explained. “But you know what? We did occur jointly. We set the parts of the puzzle together. The kids fought by that adversity and ended up in a really good place.”

That spot was the 4A condition title video game on Saturday at UCHealth Park. But the Purple-Tailed Hawks couldn’t finish the last stage, falling to Ponderosa 11-1 in 5 innings, as the Mustangs gained their second straight title. Soon after the sport, Swope built a stage to remind his gamers of the way they turned the season about.

“I told them to retain their chin up, since we had a superb year,” Swope stated.

The Hawks understood they’d have their do the job reduce out for them from Ponderosa, a staff they faced after prior to in the postseason. They missing that matchup 13-8, and embarked on a route to the championship exactly where a single additional reduction would have sent them dwelling.

Ponderosa, meanwhile, cruised through their opponents. The Mustangs topped Northfield 14-2, Erie 19- and D’Evelyn 8-2 just before Saturday’s contest.

“They’re an awfully fantastic group,” Swope reported. “And we knew we would have to participate in flawlessly. We did not. We didn’t engage in very well defensively, and we put some men on base. The match acquired away from us a small little bit.”

Cheyenne Mountain was in hanging distance as a result of the 1st three innings, trailing Ponderosa 3-1.

But by the time the fourth inning finished, the Hawks trailed 10-1.

The inning had a tiny bit of almost everything Cheyenne Mountain didn’t want: walks, glitches, passed balls. And a full whole lot of hitting. The Hawks used 3 unique pitchers in the inning.

“Their lineup, a person by nine, is actually superior,” Swope explained. “You really don’t generally see that in large school lineups. So you have to be down in the zone, you have to get the job done hitters, you have to make speeds and hope they’re not viewing the ball that working day. And they have been observing it now.”

It was a disappointing close to an extraordinary time for Cheyenne Mountain. One particular created even far more difficult due to the fact of the absence of Josh Collier, who died in a auto crash in October 2020. This would have been his senior season.

The Hawks made positive he was with them each individual action of the way, using his jersey with them onto the area in the course of the nationwide anthem just before each contest.

“For youngsters to go via some thing like that, getting rid of a mate, and for a great deal of them, that was the 1st time they shed another person near,” Swope reported. “It was hard on the boys, but I feel it helped being aware of that we brought household with us.”

The Hawks needed to be the types celebrating with a canine pile at property plate on Saturday. For on their own, and for Josh. Baseball, like life, isn’t always reasonable. But that doesn’t make it any considerably less worthwhile.

“We fought, we scratched, we did anything we could to get here,” Swope explained. “I’m happy of them.”

No question, Josh is, far too.


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