Friday, October 21, 2011

Will leads Crown's Chilly Win

Thursday night Will’s Crown Knights blew open a close game in the last inning to beat perhaps the second-best Sandy Plains team, in the competitive Fall League.

Will was again the most productive offensive player for either team, going 3-3 with a walk, two stolen bases, two RBIs, and three runs scored. He pitched the last inning, striking out three batters and hitting one. Playing shortstop, he caught two balls for outs. All this after a very long day: dressed and downstairs by 6 am, presentation at 7 am, classes until noon, then removing leaves from EIGHT yards before his 8 pm game.

The Knights faced Avery, a tough pitcher who plays for perennial class AAAA powerhouse Lassiter. In five innings Avery struck out 10 of the 29 batters he faced, allowing only three earned runs. He held Crown close, despite the nine errors his shorthanded defense committed. Two SP players left the game with injuries, and their best player had to catch, despite being left-handed.

In the top of the first Will smacked a line drive single to left to drive in Patrick from second. The ball was hit so hard that the left-fielder caught it on one hop. Will stole second and later third, but was stranded when Silas and Hunter struck out.

In the third Will helped Crown add to their lead. After Jackson walked, Will smashed a hard grounder through hole into left field, then scampered around to third on Tanner’s RBI single. Will then scored on Hunter’s grounder to second. In the bottom of the inning Will caught a high pop fly, to end the inning. Ceil had seen enough, and headed home to warm up.

Sandy Plains rallied for two runs in the fourth, and threatened to score more with runners on fist and third with one out. A batter looped a line drive to Will’s right, at shortstop. He caught the ball on the run and immediately tossed to Tanner, as the beefy third-baseman ambled back to the bag. Tanner just missed tagging the runner before he made it back to third. Otherwise they would’ve had a double play.

Against a new pitcher in the fifth Will didn’t get a pitch near the strike zone, and he walked on four pitches. With Jackson on base ahead of him, Will advanced to second on Tanner’s Texas League pop fly. After Silas’ bases-loaded walk advanced Will to third, he and Tanner scored on Hunter’s single to right. Succumbing to the 39 degree cold, Will’s friend Lucy headed home.

Crown led 8-2, and young Jackson took the mound for his fifth inning of work. A batter struck out, but reached first when the dropped third strike rolled under the backstop. Undoubtedly tired, he allowed three runs on a single, double, and sacrifice fly before retiring the side. It was 9:47, and I thought they might call the game. But Crown had just disputed a balk call, and the umpire might’ve wanted to give the home team another chance.

With the game suddenly closer, Will warmed up to close the game. But Crown blew the game open, batting around and scoring six runs. Will drove in another run with a Texas League single. He took second on a wild pitch, then scored on Tanner’s double over the leftfielder’s head.



Patrick…BB, two SB, two runs

Jackson…single, 3 runs, SB, 2 RBI, BB

Will…3 hits, 3 runs, 2 SB, 2 RBI, BB

Tanner…single, double, run, 3 RBI

Silas…RBI, two BBs

Hunter…single, two RBIs


Ryan…single, run, 2 SB

Charlie V…BB, run, RBI

Nate…double, run

Charlie W…HBP, BB, SB, two runs

Saturday Will plays a doubleheader at 11 am, then Matthew follows with a 3 pm game on the same field.

This past Tuesday Crown won 7-5, scoring one run in each of the first five innings, plus two in the sixth. Playing shortstop, Will had a putout and assist. After beating out an infield single (breaking up the no-hitter), he stole second and scored on a single to center.

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