LAKEWOOD — Green Mountain senior Robinson Cook didn’t hide his emotions after recording his eighth strikeout to end his day on the mound Saturday at Green Mountain High School.

“It’s good to be back out here with my boys,” Cook said of his longest outing since his freshman season. “It’s been awhile since I’ve gotten a full game in. It feels good to be back out.”

Cook pitched six solid innings, allowing a run on just two hits in the Rams’ 5-1 victory over Elizabeth in Green Mountain’s home opener. It was a long-time coming for Cook, who has battled knee issues that has cost him half of his sophomore and all of his junior season.

“He came out in Arizona and pitched well,” Green Mountain coach Cory Miller said of Cook. “If we make plays behind him, he’ll be just fine. It’s great to see him out there.”

Elizabeth (2-4 record) actually took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning with a 2-out triple by senior Mason Evans. A throwing error allowed Evans to trot home from third.

Photo by Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Public Schools

Cook would only give up one other hit on a 2-out single by sophomore Walker Blanchard in the fourth inning.

“It feels so long when you are out for that long,” Cook said. “It takes a toll. You miss it so much. It makes it even better when you are back and out here playing.”

Cook eventually threw 104 pitches, striking out the side in the top of the sixth inning. It was the fourth straight victory and third game this season that Green Mountain has held a team to one or zero runs.

“I think our pitching is our bright stop right now. It’s not what I expected, but I’ll take it,” Miller said. “In my opinion we’ve got five dudes who should start. It’s a good problem to half. We just need to keep them locked in.”

The five horsemen leading the Rams’ pitching staff will be Cook, seniors Jackson Prosser and Craig Busse, along with juniors Demetreus Padilla and Simon Lunsford.

Prosser was the Rams’ workhorse last season pitching nearly 40 innings.

“It is defintely exciting,” Prosser said of the Rams’ pitching depth. “We’ve got five guys who could be the ace on any another team. That is pretty exciting. We hope to make a state run with that.”

Busse missed most of his junior season after suffering an arm injury early in the season that required surgery. Padilla has already pitched eight scoreless innings while racking up 17 strikeouts, including finishing up the seventh inning Saturday with a trio of Ks. Lunsford — three-sport athlete (football, basketball and baseball) — gives Miller another solid option on the mound.

“We have five dudes that will shove (pitch) against any team on any day,” Cook said.

It took a little bit for Green Mountain offense to plate a run against Evans, who took the hill for the Cardinals. Busse was hit-by-pitch in the fourth inning and scored on an RBI groundout by Lunsford to tie the game at 1-1.

The Rams nearly batted around in their 3-run fifth inning. Senior Brady Wilder walked and eventually scored on an error go give the Rams their first lead. Prosser had the biggest hit of the game to drive in senior Nate Matson and Busse.

Photo by Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Public Schools

“Two outs with guys on second and third, you’ve got to score them,” Prosser said of his 2-run single that pushed the Rams’ lead to 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning. “I saw that high pitch and just took it to the gap.”

Green Mountain added an insurance run in the sixth inning with an RBI groundout by senior Gavin Horton.

“We have to figure out how to hit the (pitchers) in our league that are going to be just like the guy we saw today,” Miller said. “Braeden McCarroll at Golden. Pomona and Evergreen both have a dude. We need to figure out how to hit those guys. I think it is going to come.”

Golden (5-1) is the frontrunner to win the Class 4A Jeffco League title. The Demons are going for their fourth straight conference championship after being the 4A state runner-up last season.

“We haven’t won league in a while,” Cook said referring to Green Mountain’s last conference title back in 2009. “We are hunting for league. We want to be the team with targets on our back not us chasing people. That’s our goal this year.”