With a 3-1 victory over the Orem Owlz, the Grand Junction Rockies clinched their first playoff spot since 2013 with a second half division title.
The Rockies are 23-14 in the second half (43-32 overall), two full games clear of Idaho Falls with only one game remaining. In their last foray into the playoffs, the GJ Rox were eliminated in the divisional finals. Five years later, the squad is back to attempt to make their first Pioneer League Finals.
Grant Lavigne and Niko Decolati led the way for the Rockies going a combined 5-for-6. Hunter Stovall hit a game tying home run in the sixth inning to get the offense started as the Rockies rode strong pitching once again to the win.
Elsewhere, the Lancaster JetHawks opened the Cal League playoffs with an 8-4 victory at The Hangar. The Hawks hit four home runs in the victory over Rancho Cucamonga. That, combined with a strong outing from Brandon Gold and lights out relief from Ben Bowden gave the Hawks the momentum to start their series.
★ ★ ★
Class-A Advanced: Lancaster JetHawks 8, Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 4
Colton Welker (No.3 PuRP): 0-for-3, BB
Tyler Nevin (No.12 PuRP): 2-for-4, HR
Bret Boswell: 2-for-4, 2 HR
Rookie: Grand Junction Rockies 3, Orem Owlz 1
Grant Lavigne (No. 9 PuRP): 2-for-2, 2 BB
Niko Decolati: 3-for-4
Hunter Stovall: 1-for-4, HR
★ ★ ★
Class-A Advanced Lancaster: Ty Culbreth vs. Rancho Cucamonga (Lancaster leads series 1-0)
Rookie Grand Junction: TBD vs. Orem