Storm baseball team set for home opener |

Storm baseball team set for home opener

The Steamboat Storm's Chris Noonan pitches against the Vail Vipers during a June game last year. Noonan isn't back with the team this year, but pitching was a point of emphasis and the squad will have twice as many arms to turn to as it had in 2015.
Austin Colbert

Storm to offer youth camp

The Steamboat Storm players and coaches will try to pass on a bit of their skill at a youth baseball camp set for 8:30 a.m. Monday at Emerald Park. The camp will cost $40 and run until noon.

2016 Steamboat Storm schedule

All games are doubleheaders starting at noon.

Tuesday Steamboat 11, Grand Junction Rocky Mountain Oysters, 4

Steamboat 6, Grand Junction, 4

June 9 Steamboat vs. Glenwood Springs Geckos

June 11 Steamboat vs. Vail Vipers

June 14 Steamboat at Eagle Valley Eagles

June 16 Steamboat vs. Summit County Extreme Black Diamonds

June 18 Steamboat at Grand Junction

June 21 Steamboat at Glenwood

June 23 Steamboat vs. Vail

June 25 Steamboat at Eagle Valley

June 28 Steamboat vs. Summit County

June 30 Steamboat vs. Grand Junction

July 5 Steamboat at Vail

July 7 Steamboat vs. Eagle Valley

July 9 Steamboat at Summit

A league tournament will follow the regular season

— In his first year serving as a manager for the Steamboat Storm summer college baseball team, Matt Ellinghuysen said he had one big takeaway.

“Get more pitching.”

Last year’s team struggled from the mound, and with just five pitchers on the roster, occasionally had to turn to position players who hadn’t pitched since high school.

In what is the second year in the Mountain West Summer Collegiate Baseball League for both Ellinghuysen and the team, the lesson was learned. This year’s team is stocked with 10 arms.

“We definitely have a lot more pitching,” he said. “Now, we have enough pitchers to cover us for the season.”

The Storm opened its season Wednesday by winning both ends of a doubleheader against the Rocky Mountain Oysters, playing out of Grand Junction. The team won an error-filled first game — so error-filled, in fact, Steamboat Springs had just six hits — 11-4. It won the second, 6-4.

Pitcher Dalton Smith, from Wayne State College, Nebraska, got the win in the first game, while Cole Petersen, out of Southwest Minnesota State University, got it in the second.

Kyle Krogman led the way offensively, logging two doubles and a triple to drive in four runs in the second game.

The squad will play its home opener at noon Thursday at Emerald Park in Steamboat, a doubleheader against the Glenwood Springs Geckos and the first of seven home dates this season.

The league offers a chance for college baseball players to work on their game after their collegiate season is over. It features six teams — the Vail Vipers, the Eagle Valley Eagles and the Summit County Extreme Black Diamonds — in addition to Steamboat, Grand Junction and Glenwood.

Those teams play doubleheaders three times per week — Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays — for five weeks before a season-ending tournament, set to begin the week of July 11.

A league administrator assigned Steamboat’s team last year, but this year, as a returning manager, Ellinghuysen had the chance to piece together his own squad. That process started by reaching out to the 2015 players. Only one, Jace Langen, returned.

Ellinghuysen, who transitioned from a playing career at Minnesota’s Bemidji State University to serving as an assistant coach at the school, then began searching for other players.

“I contacted coaches I knew throughout my conference and in the Midwest and also basically baseball people I knew to see if there was anyone out there looking to play,” he said.

The end result is a roster with roots in the Midwest, but a reach that includes states such as Mississippi and Arizona.

“I’m really excited to see how the season progresses,” Ellinghuysen said. “We did a lot of good things (Tuesday) for our first time out. If we just keep progressing, we’ll be in good shape by the end of the season.”

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email or follow him on Twitter @JReich9

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