OGDEN — If there is such a thing as a moral victory, the Ogden Raptors got one Monday night.
The first 27 games of the 2001 campaign had been anything but stellar for the Raptors (11-17), but they pulled out a 7-4 victory over the first-place Provo Angels by scoring four runs in the bottom of the eighth to stop a four-game skid.
Ogden manager Eddie Sedar is hoping Monday's win proves to be more than just a Band-Aid on the Raptors' gaping wound.
"It is a big win against statistical-wise the best team in the league," Sedar said. "Hopefully we can keep that going for the next few games against Casper, the team we're chasing in the standings."
Reliever Mike Adams, unlike Saturday when he gave up three runs in the top of the ninth in the one-run loss, mowed down the Angels in order in the ninth to preserve the victory and record his team-high fourth save of the year.
"I told him (after Saturday), 'If it comes up again, you're my guy,' " Sedar said to his reliever. "'If we're winning, you're going in, plain and simple.'"
Ogden, currently in fourth place in the South Division, begins a stretch of eight games with third-place Casper. The first three are in Ogden beginning Tuesday night, with the last five in Casper to end the first half of the year.
"I just want us to play well," Sedar said of the upcoming series with the Rockies. "If we play well the cards will fall in our favor. When we play well we're a pretty good team."
It appeared the Angels had the Raptors, who have handed the Angels three of their seven losses, right where they wanted them.
The Provo club, which was 21-0 when leading after the seventh inning, held a 4-3 lead at the magical point, but the Raptors, thanks to an RBI single by Carlos Soriano and an RBI single by pinch-hitter Ralph Santana, followed by an error, scored two more runs, and a perfectly executed squeeze bunt by Eric Torres snapped that perfect streak.
The Angels had two runners on with one out in the eighth, but Ogden's Jonah McClanahan completed an inning-ending double play when he gunned down the speedy Sam Swenson trying to take third with a rocket throw after making a catch deep down the right-field line.
Ogden's Heath McMurray picked up his first win despite facing just one hitter. Provo's Larry Bowles suffered the loss.