SHERIDAN — Despite a last-ditch effort from the Evanston Outlaws Thursday, the Sheridan Troopers held on to advance at the Wyoming AA State Tournament, and they’ll live to fight another day.
Evanston scored six runs in the eighth inning, but Sheridan forced itself out of the jam to take a 14-13 victory. The win advances Sheridan — already in the loser’s bracket — to a matchup with Laramie Friday at 4 p.m.
The Troopers were down 5-3 before erupting for four runs in the sixth inning. Evanston scored two in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game, but Sheridan scored seven more over the next two innings.
The Outlaws weren’t going down easy.
The free runners mounted for pitcher Jeff Shanor. He allowed a walk to open the bottom half of the inning, and after a double and fielder’s choice, two more walks forced Sheridan head coach Ben Phillips to go to the bullpen.
Even with a new pitcher on the hill, Evanston took advantage of a walk, error and single to make it just a one-run game before Blake King forced a pop out to finally get out of the inning. Sheridan went three-up, three-down in the top of the ninth to put even more pressure on its defense, but the Troopers forced three outs after giving up a single to lead off the final inning.
The Troopers squeaked out the win despite their rough day on the field. The five pitchers sent to the mound Thursday gave up a combined seven walks. The team also committed six errors in the field.
Sheridan’s hitting alleviated some of the damage. The Troopers had 16 hits in the game. King, Connor Jorgenson, Nolan McCafferty, Coy Steel and Noah Gustafson all had multi-hit games, led by Steel, who finished 4 for 5 with three RBIs and four runs scored.
Sheridan must win against Laramie Friday to stay in the tournament with a shot at playing in the championship. The Troopers beat Laramie 8-7 in the only regular-season matchup between the two teams.