Farmington native comes up big on local stage

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FARMINGTON – Welcome home, Chase Silseth.

Piedra Vista’s star pitcher took the mound for the first time at the Connie Mack World Series with the Midland Redskins, and the comfortable surroundings of home worked to his advantage en route to a 3-2 Game 14 victory over the Danville Hoots today at Ricketts Park.

"It's awesome. I'm thankful my coach is having my back on it in a really big game. Home crowd, nerves got to me a little bit," Silseth said.

Silseth threw with precision and poise, targeting the inner part of the strike zone with his two-seam fastball.

"That's where I like to attack because it's a difficult pitch to hit," Silseth said.

Despite giving up two runs on a sacrifice groundout and a fielding error, Silseth forced a number of groundouts and popouts.

"It's all about damage control," Silseth said. "When there's people on base, you can't freak out. In those stressful situations, you just breathe. That's what I was able to do."

Silseth threw 5 2/3 strong innings, surrendering just two runs on three hits, walking three and striking out four.

Facing Redskins reliever Liam Eddy, the Hoots had a chance tie the game with two outs in the top of the seventh.

Pinch hitter Khalid Johnson ripped a single to right field, and Ryan Cole reached third base. Cole had a brief window to bolt for home, but he pumped the brakes the second after he stepped off the bag.

"They got that ball in there pretty quick," Hoots coach Don Johns said.

Brett Tressen grounded out on the next at-bat to end the game.

Because both sides were undefeated entering today's game, both Midland and Danville will play again Sunday. The start time will be announced.

Matt Hollinshead covers sports for the Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577.

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