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Giants finish strong, head to state tournament

JACKSON, Wyo. — It’s off to the postseason for the Post 43 Giants (22-28) after the Jackson ballclub finished the regular season winning two of three from the Evanston Outlaws (27-20).

Friday’s doubleheader sweep of the Outlaws was not without more than a few tense moments. Jackson starter Connor Lang went the distance, scattering 8 hits and 3 runs over 7 innings. For most of the game, Lang had to be wondering where his help was.

The offense was nowhere to be found through the first 5 innings as Evanston nursed a 2-0 lead nearly all game. The Giants finally broke through and got to Outlaw Gus Allred with a 5-run 6th inning to take the lead and hang on for the 5-3 win.

The second game was more of a slugfest—Jackson pounding out 15 hits on the way to an 11-9 victory. It was all Post 43 until the final inning when Evanston came alive with 7 runs to make it interesting. Steven Ashurts was able to come in and put out the fire for the save.

Ashurts also led the way offensively for the Giants, going 3-4 with 2 runs batted in. Parker Bleggi, who went the first 4 innings on the mound, was 3-5, 2 RBI. Quentin Bruno (2-3, 2 RBI) and Seth Christiansen (2-3, 2 RBI) were also in the middle of every scoring rally.

Post 43’s luck ran out Saturday morning as the team played its final regular-season game with a lineup of mostly underclassmen. Manager Jason Huggins opted to sit most of his regulars to rest them for postseason play this week. Evanston did the same.

Still, the scrappy Giants traded blows with the Outlaws all the way to a 14-13 finish.

The Giants closed the 2020 campaign in strong fashion, winning five of their last seven games. They bring a 22-28 record into the postseason. State tournament play gets underway in Rock Springs Aug. 5-9.

The Jackson Giants earned the #2 seed in the AA West pitting them against the Sheridan Troopers (#3 seed from the East). That game is slated for August 5 at 1 p.m. The winner of that contest plays the winner of Rock Springs versus Gillette.

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