The 16 teams that qualified for the 3A State baseball tournament will all be in action in four locations around the state of Utah today. Pine View, Juan Diego, Stansbury and Canyon View all won their respective regions and will host the first two rounds of the playoffs.
It’s no secret that a loss on the first day of the playoffs makes it almost impossible to win the state tournament, which has a double-elimination format. A loss today would mean a team would have to win seven games in three days May 19-21 against the best teams in the state — without losing once.
That’s why going 2-0 is so crucial. Staying in the winner’s bracket is imperative. With that in mind, we’ve broken down the four playoff pods and the likely scenarios that will play out this weekend.
3A Playoff pods — Saturday, May 14
@Pine View Pod
Pine View (16-6) vs. Morgan (6-14), 10 a.m. (ESPNRadio 97.7 FM)
Juab (8-10) vs. Grantsville (14-7), 12:30 p.m.
Losers meet at approx. 3 p.m.
Winners meet at approx. 5:30 p.m.
Pine View, 16-6 (Region 9 champion, 7-1 vs. current playoff teams) — The defending state-champion Panthers score 6.0 runs per game while allowing 2.5 rpg (best in 3A). PV finished the year by winning three in a row, including a sweep over rival Desert Hills to win the league title. PV has hit two home runs this season. Player to watch: Pitcher Dakota Donovan has an ERA under 1.00.
Morgan, 6-14 (Region 11 fourth place, 0-10 vs. current playoff teams) — The Trojans scored 5.8 runs per game, but allowed 9.6 runs per contest. Morgan is 3-4 in its last seven games, but all four losses were by mercy rule, including a 21-1 manhandling by Juan Diego. Morgan has no home runs this season. Player to watch: Makade Garner leads the team with three doubles.
Juab, 8-10 (Region 12 second place, 5-4 vs. current playoff teams) — The Wasps averaged 5.1 runs per game this season and allowed 3.3 runs per game. Juab closed the year on a three-game winning streak, including a 2-1 win over Canyon View. Juab has three homers this season. Player to watch: Nick Wohlforth has two homers and three doubles, plus five wins on the mound.
Grantsville, 14-7 (Region 10 third place, 2-7 vs. current playoff teams) — The Cowboys averaged 6.3 runs per game this season and allowed 4.3 rpg. GHS closed the year by losing five of its last seven games, all to playoff teams. Grantsville has hit seven home runs this year. Player to watch: Kyle Peterson has five extra-base hits and has five victories on the mound.
Pod outlook: Pine View will 10-run Morgan, but Juab-Grantsville should be close. Juab should win, but neither team will beat the Panthers.
@Juan Diego Pod
Juan Diego (15-5) vs. Cedar (11-12), 10 a.m.
Park City (11-10) vs. Carbon (10-11), 12:30 p.m.
Losers meet at approx. 3 p.m.
Winners meet at approx. 5:30 p.m.
Juan Diego, 15-5 (Region 11 champion, 7-1 vs. current playoff teams) — The Soaring Eagle averaged 8.9 runs per game and gave up 3.7 rpg. JD had a nine-game winning streak before two losses to higher-classification teams last week. Juan Diego has hit 14 home runs this year (most in 3A). Player to watch: Josh Glenn’s numbers are eye-popping, with six homers, nine doubles and a triple.
Cedar, 11-12 (Region 9 fourth place, 3-7 vs. current playoff teams) — The Redmen averaged 6.1 runs per game and surrendered 5.9 rpg. Cedar closed the year by winning three straight to grab the last playoff spot. CHS has hit four home runs this year. Player to watch: Rykker Tom has three homers and 10 extra-base hits.
Park City, 11-10 (Region 10 second place, 7-4 vs. current playoff teams) — The Miners scored 4.0 runs per game and allowed 3.6 rpg. PC won five of its last six games, including a 1-0 shutout of Stansbury. Park City has not hit a home run this season. Player to watch: Junior stud Ryan Brady has four doubles and has six wins on the mound.
Carbon, 10-11 (Region 12 third place, 6-7 vs. current playoff teams) — The Dinos averaged 7.0 runs per game and surrendered 6.1 rpg. Carbon closed the year by winning three out of four, beating Juab twice. CHS has hit four home runs this year. Player to watch: Cole Fossat has 15 extra-base hits and four wins on the mound.
Pod outlook: The Juan Diego-Cedar game will be closer than one might think, but the Soaring Eagle has too much firepower against suspect Cedar pitching. Park City should handle Carbon, but neither will beat Juan Diego.
@Canyon View Pod
Canyon View (16-5) vs. Union (6-15), 9:30 a.m.
Desert Hills (12-12) vs. Logan (13-10), 12:30 p.m. (ESPNRadio 97.7 FM)
Losers meet at approx. 3:30 p.m. @ Cedar High
Winners meet at approx. 3:30 p.m. @ CVHS
Canyon View, 16-5 (Region 12 champion, 8-3 vs. current playoff teams) — The Falcons scored 8.1 runs a game and allowed 4.9 runs per game. CV had a 13-game winning streak before dropping its last two games to Richfield and Juab (the Falcons already had the league title clinched at that point). The Falcons hit 14 home runs this season. Player to watch: Payton Higgins has 13 extra-base hits this season, including four homers.
Union, 6-15 (Region 10 fourth place, 2-10 vs. current playoff teams) — The Cougars scored 4.6 runs per game and allowed 9.0 runs per game. Union, at one point, lost eight of nine, but finished the year going 2-2, including a win over Park City. The Cougars hit three home runs this year. Player to watch: Korbyn Bertoch has eight extra-base hits this year.
Desert Hills, 12-12 (Region 9 second place, 3-3 vs. current playoff teams) — The Thunder scored 5.6 runs per game and allowed 4.9 runs per game. DH’s .500 record is deceiving as they played a brutal preseason schedule that included seven 4A and 5A schools and five out of state opponents. The Thunder hit 11 home runs this season. Player to watch: Brayson Hurdsman has 12 extra-base hits and four wins on the mound.
Logan, 13-10 (Region 11 third place, 4-7 vs. current playoff teams) — The Grizzlies averaged 7.0 runs per game and allowed 4.4 rpg. Logan was 7-2 in region except for the Juan Diego games. Against the Soaring Eagle, the Grizz were 0-3 and were outscored 30-7. LHS hit one home run this season. Player to watch: Eric Laub and Chase Mercado had four extra-base hits each.
Pod outlook: This might be the toughest pod overall, but let’s be honest, the Thunder are the team to beat despite their record. Canyon View regularly finished in the middle of the pack in Region 9, which still makes them a good playoff team. The Thunder and Falcons will meet in the second round and evidence suggests DH will win.
Bear River (14-7) vs. Dixie (14-6), 10 a.m.
Stansbury (15-6) vs. Richfield (11-10), 1 p.m.
Losers meet at approx. 4 p.m. (at Grantsville)
Winners meet at approx. 4 p.m. (at Stansbury)
Stansbury, 15-6 (Region 10 champion, 9-2 vs. current playoff teams) — The Stallions averaged 7.6 runs per game and allowed 5.3 rpg. SHS had won nine out of 10 games late in the season before falling to Skyline 10-6 in a non-league game three days ago. Stansbury has hit four home runs this year. Player to watch: Clayton Stanworth has seven doubles, two triples and a homer this season.
Richfield, 11-10 (Region 12 fourth place, 2-8 vs. current playoff teams) — The Wildcats averaged 6.8 runs per game and allowed 4.6 rpg. RHS started the season 5-0, but stumbled through a weak Region 12 with a 5-7 record. Richfield has hit five home runs this season. Player to watch: Evan Jerome leads the team with eight extra-base hits.
Bear River, 14-7 (Region 11 second place, 7-5 vs. current playoff teams) — The Bears averaged 7.0 runs per game and allowed 3.0 rpg. BRHS went 8-3 in its last 11 games, including wins over Juan Diego and Logan. Bear River hit three home runs this season. Player to watch: Nic Rasmussen is 4-0 on the mound for the Bears.
Dixie, 14-6 (Region 9 third place, 6-4 vs. current playoff teams) — The Flyers averaged 4.5 runs per game and allowed 3.3 rpg. DHS finished the regular season with a split vs. Pine View and then a sweep of Snow Canyon to tie for second in ultra-tough Region 9. Dixie hit two home runs this year. Player to watch: Sophomores Tyson Fisher and Hobbs Nyberg are young and talented.
Pod outlook: Though Stansbury beat Dixie in the preseason, the Flyers are even odds to come out of the pod unscathed. With the exception of Pine View, the Flyers have the best pitchers in 3A. The Bears sling it pretty well as well, so there shouldn’t be a lot of runs scored in this pod.
3A Playoffs resume May 19 (Thursday) at 11 a.m.
3A Championship game is May 21 (Saturday) at 11:30 a.m.
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