Saturday, May 23, 2009

No Hitter...& Almost Another!

After allowing hits to two of the first three batters, Prowler pitchers threw no-hit ball for the rest of the afternoon’s TWO games. Ryan T, AJ, and Will blanked Loganville in the remainder of Game One, then Michael and Ryan G combined for an official no-hitter in Game Two. Over the same stretch the Prowlers outscored their opponents 26 – 0, and out-hit them 32 – 0, getting 16 safeties in each contest.

Late in Game Two the only question was whether the Prowlers could keep the South Gwinnett JV out of the hit column. Catcher AJ and leftfielder Ryan G made nice running catches of foul balls in the next-to-last inning, then AJ caught another foul pop for the first out in the last inning. Up 14 – 0, the Prowler assistant coaches had flipped the defense for the last frame, switching three infielders with the outfielders. Only Will remained at his usual shortstop position.

The next batter tossed aside no-hitter etiquette and bunted hard, past the pitcher. Will charged hard onto the wet grass. His only play was a bare-hand pickup and toss to first. He executed the move perfectly, firing a strike to the stretched out first-baseman Tyler.

One out to go. The South Gwinnett cleanup hitter turned on Ryan G’s first pitch, launching a line drive deep down the right field line. He took off and rounded first, headed to second for a double…when the plate umpire signaled foul ball. The no-no was intact! After a swing and a miss, Ryan painted the outside corner, and the umpire rang him up. No hitter!

Will’s defense at short played large in the no-hit string. After the two Loganville hits, he was the middle man on a 4-6-3 double play. The next batter gounded out to Will at short. In Game Two he also gobbled up a grounder for an out.

Batting leadoff, Will contributed his share on offense, scoring every time he reached base…including tagging at third and scoring on sac flies three times. He went first to third on Audie’s singles…twice. Will hit well even when he made outs. Twice he rapped line drives…but right at the third-baseman and centerfielder.

In Game One Will came in to pitch the last inning. Facing the 2-3-4 meat of the lineup, he retired the side in order…striking out the number three hitter.

The Prowlers play tomorrow at Parkview High, at 12:15. Then they travel back to South Gwinnett High in Snellville for a 4:30 game.

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