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Raptors win 3rd straight to open final series; Vibes clinch playoff matchup with Ogden

By Brett Hein - Standard-Examiner | Sep 7, 2023

The Ogden Raptors won their third straight game to open the regular season’s final series Thursday while the Rocky Mountain Vibes clinched the Pioneer League South Division’s second-half title.

That means Ogden and Rocky Mountain will face off in the South Divisional series.

Game 1 is at 6:35 p.m. Monday, Sept. 11, in Colorado Springs.

Ogden hosts Game 2 at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 13. Game 3, if necessary, is the next day.

The Raptors (48-46, 17-29) got another shutdown performance from their bullpen and scored the game’s final six runs Thursday to defeat Idaho Falls (34-59, 18-27) by a 9-5 margin.

First baseman Jonathan Soto hit 3 for 5 with three RBIs. He singled in a run in the first, paired with Nick Ultsch on RBI doubles to tie the game 3-3, and drove in the game’s final run in the eighth.

Idaho Falls led 5-3 after four innings against Ogden starter Rafi Vazquez, who allowed five runs on nine hits over five innings. But after the Raptors knotted the game 3-3, it was just a sacrifice fly and an error that helped the Chukars regain the lead.

Josh Broughton got it to 5-5 with a two-run single in the sixth for Ogden. Catcher Logan Williams tallied his only hit of the night in what proved to be the winner, an RBI single in the seventh to take the lead.

Reese Alexiades doubled in two runs in the eighth and scored on Soto’s final RBI for the final score.

Jackson Smith, Brandon Bonner, Quinn Waterhouse and Brandon McCabe each threw a scoreless inning for Ogden, allowing a combined four hits and walking one. For the second straight night, McCabe struck out two in the ninth inning.

The two teams finish the series, and the regular season, Friday and Saturday.

Rocky Mountain (47-46, 27-19) defeated Grand Junction 8-4 on Thursday, putting the Vibes three games ahead of the Jackalopes in the second-half standings with two games left to play, therefore clinching the half title and the corresponding playoff berth.

RMV started the season 7-18 but has since gone 40-28. As of now, Ogden has the South Division’s best overall record by a half-game over RMV.

In the North Division, Billings has lost two straight after winning 15 in a row, putting the Mustangs a half-game behind Missoula in the second-half standings. If first-half-champ Missoula wins the second half, the North’s second playoff berth goes to the team with the best overall record in the division (that would be Glacier). Missoula defeated Glacier 8-6 on Thursday while Billings fell 6-3 to Northern Colorado.


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