CALDWELL, Idaho – The Falcons flew high Saturday in consecutive contests again the Elko baseball team, notching back-to-back victories over the Indians.
Vallivue opened the scoring in the bottom of the second inning.
The Falcons took a 1-0 lead on an RBI groundout by sophomore Hunter Simpson that drove in sophomore Jaxson Northcroft.
With two outs, Vallivue posted four runs and took a 5-0 lead.
Junior Chase Carpenter scored on a passed ball, and junior Cooper Sutton came home on an RBI single by sophomore Lan Larison, who gave the Falcons a 4-0 lead on a triple by senior Gabe Childs.
Childs crossed for the second run from a passed ball in the inning, opening a 5-0 lead.
Elko gained two of its three hits for the game in the top of the third inning, junior Austyn Marin hitting a one-out single and junior courtesy runner Lukas Nelms coming around on a two-out double by senior Gavin Byington for Elko’s lone run of the contest.
Byington provided the Indians’ final hit with a base knock in the top of the fifth with two outs, but he and junior Cooper Jones were left on base with a groundout on a fielder’s choice.
Childs singled and drive in Larison in the bottom half, the Falcons taking a 7-1 lead when Childs was pushed home on a sacrifice fly by junior Cobe Lehman.
Sophomore Stryder Childs led off the bottom of the sixth with a double to left field and scored the game’s final run after an error at third base.
Vallivue cruised to an 8-1 victory in the first ballgame.
Gabe Childs drove in a game-high two runs and finished 2-for-4 with a double, tying Larison for the game high in runs scored, each crossing twice.
Byington led the Indians with two hits – a single and a double – in a 2-for-2 effort at the plate and drove in Elko’s run, scoring Nelms.
Marin provided the only other hit for the Indians.
Sophomore Gabe Suarez spun a solid start for the Falcons, throwing six innings of one-run ball and allowing just three hits while striking out two batters, despite giving up five walks.
While the first matchup was no contest, the second game of the twin bill was a barn-burner.
Elko took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on a sacrifice fly by junior Kaleb Martinez that scored Jones, who advanced to third base on a sacrifice bunt by senior Kamren Backherms.
The Falcons clawed back and took a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the first, starting their scoring with an RBI double by senior Drew Thompson that brought home Gabe Childs.
Junior Hauk Wyatt smacked a shot up the middle and drove in Thompson for a 2-1 lead, followed by a groundout RBI by senior Jake Daniel that sent in Wyatt for a 3-1 advantage.
Larison scored in the bottom of the second inning on an Elko error at second base, Vallivue opening a 4-1 lead.
The Indians cut the lead to two in the top of the third, scoring a run on a sacrifice fly by Backherms that crossed Jones.
Junior Carter Alvarado led off with single in the top of the fourth, but the Indians were retired in order following the base knock.
Vallivue hit consecutive singles in the bottom half, but Jones cut down a baserunner at third base with a throw to senior Julian Loera.
Elko escaped the inning with a strikeout by Alvarado.
The Indians appeared to be in trouble with consecutive outs to start the top of the fifth, but Elko’s rally began with three straight singles – loading the bases with one-baggers by Marin, Jones and Byington.
Nelms entered the game as a courtesy runner and scored on a passed ball, Backherms giving the Indians a 5-4 lead with a two-RBI single up the gut – Jones and Byington crossing the plate.
The seesaw action began, the Falcons coming up with a two-run frame in the bottom of the fifth.
A single by Carpenter tied the game 5-5 and scored Daniel, the Falcons taking the lead on the next at-bat.
Sutton singled to left field and drove in Carpenter for a 6-5 lead.
Loera benefited from an error at shortstop on a groundball by junior Christian Quintana in the top of the sixth, tying the contest at 6-all.
Elko placed runners on the corners with two outs but was picked off at first base to end the inning.
The Indians took a 7-6 lead in the top of the seventh.
Jones led off with a triple to left field and scored on a sac fly by Byington, but Elko could not take advantage of consecutive walks and ended the frame with a fly out.
Vallivue junior Dusty Swabel was hit by a pitch in the leadoff position in the bottom of the seventh, and courtesy runner Simpson tied the game on the next AB – a double by Daniel to left field.
Elko recorded consecutive outs on a popup to the pitcher and a fly ball to right field, but the second out advanced Daniel to third base.
A passed ball gave Daniel a run to the dish, the Falcons winning on a walk-off freebie.
Vallivue overcame Elko’s comeback bid and hung on for an 8-7 victory, beating the Indians in consecutive games.
Backherms drove in a game-high three RBIs and finished 1-for-2, Jones scoring a game-best four runs – hitting 2-for-3 with a triple.
Daniel topped Vallivue’s roster with two RBIs and closed 2-for-3 with a double, also leading the Falcons with two runs scored – none larger than the walk-off winner.
Thompson led the Falcons with a 3-for-4 showing at the dish – poking two doubles – scoring a run and driving in another.
Marin joined Jones as the only players with multiple hits for the Indians, finishing 2-for-3.
The Indians will enter the bye week and open league play of the Division 3A North at 3 p.m. March 23 on the road in Dayton.