Jul 19, 2012 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorRiverton scored five insurance runs in the top of the sixth inning Wednesday to ensure a 10-2 victory over North Big Horn at the Wyoming District 1 11-12-year-old Little League baseball tournament in Cody.
The win advanced Riverton into the Thursday afternoon semifinal game vs. Green River. Green River knocked out Powell 17-7. North Big Horn is made up primarily of players from Lovell.
North Big Horn was 3-0 vs. Riverton in the regular season.
"We came out ready to play, and it showed," Riverton manager Mike Fisher said. "We came out swinging. We weren't taking very many strikes. That resulted in a lot more offense. We were just a lot more aggressive."
The winner of the Riverton-Green River game will qualify for the state tournament next week in Green River.
Riverton and Green River haven't played against each other this year in previous tournaments.
"Green River played well against Powell," Fisher said.
Fisher is thinking about starting Dillon Fabricus on the mound in the semifinal game.
"It will depend on how many pitches he throws," Fisher said. "We might throw three or four different pitchers."
The loser will play a consolation game but won't be able to make it to state. Lander received a No. 1 seed for the district tournament after sweeping Riverton last week in a play-in series for district. Lander plays Cody at 7 p.m. Thursday in the other semifinal.
The district championship will be played on Friday afternoon.
Riverton 10, Big Horn 2
North Big Horn hit a solo home run early off Riverton starter Jaren Draper for a 1-0 lead.
"Jaren didn't need to be calmed down at all," said Fisher about the home run. "The team was still ready to go. It didn't effect them at all."
Riverton's Brodie Roden got the first key hit of the contest for the all-stars in the top of the third inning, giving Riverton a 2-1 lead on a two-run single. Roden later scored on a wild pitch for a 3-1 cushion.
After giving up the early run to Green River, Draper had control on the mound for Riverton. He pitched a scoreless third inning to keep his team in front.
Riverton scored two runs in the next two innings for some cushion. Kyren Higgs belted a solo home run in the top of the sixth inning.
"We have been waiting for some of the other guys to show some of their power," Fisher said. "Kyren has been hitting home runs in practice. We were just waiting for him to hit one in the game."
Riverton finished the inning with four more runs on five hits for a 10-2 lead.
Draper had to leave the game in the fifth inning after he reached the 85-pitch limit.
Draper won't be allowed to pitch the rest of the tournament.
"Jaren pitched very well," Fisher said.
Higgs and Matt Fisher finished the game on the mound in the fifth and sixth innings.
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