Cañon City gains lead in key suspended baseball game at Mesa Ridge

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Photo - Mesa Ridge second baseman Jarod Morris tags out Canon City's Michael Hawver as he tries to extend a single into a double Tuesday, May 2, 2017, during the first inning at Mesa Ridge High School. The game was postponed in the bottom of the third inning because of rain with Canon City ahead 10-2.   (The Gazette, Christian Murdock)
Mesa Ridge second baseman Jarod Morris tags out Canon City's Michael Hawver as he tries to extend a single into a double Tuesday, May 2, 2017, during the first inning at Mesa Ridge High School. The game was postponed in the bottom of the third inning because of rain with Canon City ahead 10-2. (The Gazette, Christian Murdock)

Cañon City's Harvey Wall tossed a baseball from his dugout to Mesa Ridge's dugout where Jaeden Hegmann stood waiting to catch it as the rain poured down on Tuesday afternoon.

Whoever caught the ball wrote a message and sent it back across the rain-drenched field where opposing teammates crowded around to see what had been sent back.

The players had never met before. But it was a way to pass the time while they waited for umpires to decide on postponing the game between the 4A Colorado Springs Metro League's undefeated teams.

Wall, Hegmann and their respective teammates will get reacquainted Monday when they resume play after Tuesday's game was called in the bottom of the third.

Cañon City, tied for third in this week's Pikes Peak region 4A rankings, led host Mesa Ridge 9-2 before the game was suspended.

When it resumes, Mesa Ridge (8-8, 6-0 4A CSML) will be at-bat with nobody out and runners at first and third.

"This is a really big game," Hegmann said. "If we win this game we would win league, and we just need to take this one."

The Tigers scored four runs in the first and five in the third, punctuated by Lincoln Andrews' three-run blast over the right-field fence.

"We wanted to get out early and try to get a lead," Cañon City coach Tim Ritter said. "It's always a little more comfortable to pitch with the lead."

The Tigers (12-4, 5-0) play at Woodland Park on Wednesday and host Elizabeth on Thursday before getting back at the Grizzlies.

Mesa Ridge plays at Widefield on Thursday and has a nonconference game with Liberty on Friday.