Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Will Pitches, Hits Crown to Victory

In perhaps the last game Ceil and I will ever see Will play, he once again put on a show, leading his Knights to a 8-4 win over Southern Prospects…a team comprised of public schoolers who aren’t playing for their school team, perhaps due to grades or the like. Several of these players also play at East Cobb Baseball.

Will pitched five innings, and allowed just one earned run. he struck out four batters, giving Will the team record for most strikeouts in a career. The win made his season record 6-0, just one win away from the team season record. He is also approaching the team record for career wins.

Crown committed three first-inning errors, which led to two unearned Southern Prospect runs. Down 3-0 going into the bottom of the first, it was crucial for Crown to respond offensively, or risk falling further behind. Leading off, Will smashed a triple to deep right center. His run scored on the catcher’s throwing error. Later in the inning two more Crown runners scored, tying the game.

Back on the mound Will shut Southern Prospects down, retiring 14 of the next 15 batters. He threw out a batter at first, picked another runner off first, and covered first to record another putout. Will played third base the final two innings.

In the bottom of the second Will drove in what turned out to be the eventual game-winning run. With one out and runners on second and third, Will scorched a line drive to centerfield. The ball was hit so hard that the centerfielder immediately caught the ball, but it was still deep enough not only for the runner to score from third, but the runner on second also advanced to third. Crown went on to score three more times in the inning.

Will came up to bat in the fourth inning with a runner on third. With one out, the infield was playing in. Will smashed another line drive…but right at the shortstop. In the sixth Will hit his fourth straight hard line drive, but this time the leftfielder caught the ball.

NOTES: When another Crown error put a runner on second with one out, the leader hitter popped up a bunt attempt. Catcher Patrick came out into fair territory and caught the pop…then stumbled into Will. Mary-Clayton said it looked like a hug…Will fell backwards and Patrick almost toppled over on top of him. Thinking about Sergio Garcia and Rory McElroy at the Masters, I said that if players started hugging after good plays, soon they’d be hugging after every play. Sure enough, when Braeden took the mound to pitch the sixth inning, Will went over and gave him a hug.

This Southern Prospects team has beaten the Johnson Ferry Independent Studies team twice.

Crown wore their burgundy alternate jersey for the first time all year. Since the Knights played well and won, perhaps they’ll wear them again in Florida.

In addition to Ceil and MC, local resident Lynn Bailey braved the cold, windy conditions.

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