CHEYENNE – A five-run third inning lifted the Idaho Falls (Idaho) Bandits – the reigning American Legion national champions – to an 11-3 victory over the Laramie Rangers in the championship game of the Firecracker tournament Sunday in Cheyenne.
The Bandits also tallied three runs in the fifth inning.
Idaho Falls scored one run in both the first and second innings before the Rangers (23-12) knotted the score in the top of the third. Caleb Eaton tripled to score Riley Hogsett. Eaton scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Aidan Morris.
Laramie loaded the bases with one out in the seventh. Ryan Chamberlain scored Hogsett on a fielder’s choice to shortstop. Morris was retired at second for the second out of the inning. Calvin Webb grounded out to end the game.
Laramie advanced the title tilt with a 6-4 victory over Cheyenne Post 6. It’s the Rangers’ second win over the Sixers since 2005.
Garrett Dodd’s two-run single in the bottom of the fifth inning gave the Rangers a 5-4 lead. Ben Ruckman doubled in the sixth to extend the lead to 6-4.
Ruckman was 3 for 3 for Laramie.
Brandon Chavez pitched the final two innings to grab the victory in relief.
The Rangers staked a 3-0 lead in the first inning, thanks to a two-run double from Webb and a sacrifice fly from Tyler Oppie.
Andrew Johnson got Cheyenne (30-12) on the scoreboard with a double to center field in the third. The Sixers took a 4-3 lead in the top of the fifth on a two-run double to right by Colter McAnelly.
IDAHO FALLS 11, LARAMIE 3
Laramie…… 002 000 1 – 3 4 3
Idaho Falls…… 115 031 X – 11 14 1
Laramie pitching: Oppie, Ruckman (3), Bangert (6) and Morris. Idaho Falls pitching: Rose, Perez (4), Jephson (6) and White.
W: Rose. L: Oppie (5-2).
3B: Laramie 1 (Eaton); Idaho Falls 2 (Jephson, White). HR: Idaho Falls 1 (Jephson).
LARAMIE 6, CHEYENNE 4
Cheyenne…… 002 020 0 – 4 7 0
Laramie…… 300 021 X –6 6 0
Cheyenne pitching: Romero, Bohlmann (2), McAnelly (6) and Lobmeyer. Laramie pitching: Chamberlain, Ruckman (4), Chavez (6) and Webb.
W: Chavez (2-1). L: Bohlmann (3-2).
2B: Cheyenne 2 (Johnson, McAnelly); Laramie 2 (Webb, Ruckman).