BOZEMAN — Things got a little dicey in the top of the seventh, but the Helena Senators held on, 6-5, against the Mountain Crest (Utah) Trappers for their third win in a row at the Heroes Park AA Invitational.
With one out in the visitors' half of the final frame, Hudson Phelps singled to left off Senators starter Eamon Burke. Burke got the next batter, Nate Rowley, to hit into a fielder's choice as Helena third baseman Forest Suero got the putout at second base. Kaden Deeter followed with a single to left, putting runners at first and second. The Trappers went station-to-station on Brayden Schiess's single to left. Koleman Foulger continued the hit parade with another single to left, scoring Rowley. Trailing 6-3, Caden Jones punched one into right field to score Deeter and Schiess. Burke kept his cool and got L Welch to fly out to left to end the ball game.
"I wasn't too nervous," said Senators (4-4, 17-9) coach Jon Burnett. "There were two plays that we probably should have made to end the game a little quicker. Eamon was making good pitches and doing a good job for us. We were confident he could finish it off."
Burke's complete-game victory was the third in two days for Helena. Gavin Thennis and Peyton Witham pitched five-inning complete games Saturday. Before the final inning, Burke was cruising. Over the first six innings, Mountain Crest managed a pair of runs and scattered five hits before doubling its hit total and scoring three in the seventh.
After being held scoreless with one hit the first two innings, the Helena bats woke up. Matt Krieger was 2-for-3 with a run scored for the Senators. Caden Sell went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs and a run scored. Suero clubbed an RBI double, his second in as many days.
"We left a few opportunities on the base paths on the offensive side earlier in the game that we should have capitalized on, but all in all a pretty gutsy performance from Eamon," Burnett said.
With weather rolling in, there is a chance the Senators will face Idaho Falls or Yakima late Saturday night in the tournament championship.