Written by Compiled by Dr. Alan Cooper Friday, 18 May 2012 00:00
The BOLTS keep striking lighting every time they take the field. Jillian Cooper, the starting pitcher, pitched 2 strong innings and got the win. Jillian also had a hit and a run batted in. Amber Roggendorf had two walks and two big runs batted in. Amber caught the game ending line drive and assisted in the double play to end the game. Daniella “K” Connor had 3 base hits and pitched the last inning to get the save. Lauren “Lights Out” Wasserman pitched two strong innings, striking out four batters. Lauren also had 2 hits and 2 runs batted in. Samantha Grenard hit the ball hard, walked once and scored a run. Samantha did another great job catching behind the plate. Haylie Lempert walked 4 times and scored 3 big runs. Cece Schnall scored 2 big runs and had a run batted in. Cece also did a great job catching behind the plate, assisting in a put out at home plate. Kaitlyn Stoyer had a big run batted in single and made a great play at second base. Katie Gray had 3 walks and scored 2 big runs. Gabby Ranieri hit a shot over the first baseman’s head for a big single into right field. Gabby also scored 2 runs.
The Ducks rolled to their third win in a row, this time with an impressive 11-4 win against the first place River Sharks. The Ducks got on the board in the top of the first inning, thanks to a leadoff walk from Mikey Rose and a single from Joey Jacobs, which was followed by a run scoring fielder’s choice off the bat of Eric Del Valle. George Vlantis followed with a run scoring triple to bring the first inning tally to 3 runs. Joey Jacobs started the game on the mound for the Ducks, and gave up 4 quick runs to the first four River Sharks hitters. At this point, Joey channeled his inner Rocky (“I’m not going down again!”) and pitched a masterful game the rest of the way. He ended up going 4 full innings, and after the first four batters of the game scored, he proceeded to strike out seven, gave up only two hits, no walks and did not allow another River Sharks runner to score. Eric Del Valle relieved Joey to start the 5th inning, and once again was unable to hit (2 IP, 6 batters faced, 5 Ks). Meanwhile, on offense the Ducks continued with their hot bats, scoring 3 runs in the top of the second inning to reclaim the lead 6-4. The second inning offense was led by walks from Tyler Witt (who ended up stealing home) and Robert Cass who scored on a single from Mikey Rose (who later scored on an error). With the exception of singles from Brian Volk and Eric Del Valle, the Ducks were quiet at the plate during innings 3-5, but erupted in the 6th inning for 5 more runs to put the game out of reach. Tyler Witt once again served as the catalyst with a leadoff single. After two quick outs, the Ducks came through with clutch 2-out runs, thanks to singles from Mikey Rose and Joey Jacobs (with Joey’s single bringing in Tyler), a 2-run double from Eric Del Valle, a walk by George Vlantis and a big 2-run single by Nick Femia. Once again, defense was a big factor in the win, with Brian Korpacz, Jesse Romano and Brian Volk (3 tough innings behind the plate) helping to keep the high-scoring River Sharks off the board.
The Ducks continued their winning ways with a second consecutive victory over the super Cyclones, this time winning 9-7. Despite giving up 7 runs, pitching really was the story for the Ducks. Eric Del Valle started the game on the mound for the Ducks, and went two scoreless, nearly perfect, innings (2 IP, 5 Ks, 1 BB, 0 H). Mikey Rose followed in innings 3 and 4, and was almost as good (2 IP, 3 Ks, 2 BB, 0 H). After the Cyclones scored 5 quick runs in the bottom of the 5th inning, Tyler Witt came on with one out to finish the 5th inning and went the rest of the way, giving up only 1 hit and one walk with 2 unearned runs. Even though the Cyclones scored late, it was not enough to overcome the suddenly potent Ducks bats. Robert Cass got the scoring RBI parade started in the 2nd inning with a clutch 2-out, 2-RBI single, which was followed by another run scoring single from Joey Jacobs. The Ducks scored another run in the 3rd inning to take a 4-0 lead, thanks to walks from Nick Femia and Jesse Romano, and Nick later scored on an error. The Ducks increased their lead to 6-0 in the top of the 4th inning, helped by a one-out single by Joey Jacobs, followed by a walk for Mikey Rose. Both runners scored on a hit from Neck Femia. In the top of the 5th inning, the Ducks again tacked on a run, to make it 7-0, when Tyler Witt doubled to start the inning, stole third and scored on a wild pitch. In the top of the 6th inning, after the Cyclones had closed the gap to 7-5, the Ducks got some much needed insurance runs when George Vlantis doubled to lead off the inning and was followed by Nick Femia’s walk and Brian Volk’s big 2-run single. Defense was also key to the Ducks’ victory, and no two plays were more important that the ones Brian Korpacz turned in while playing second base during the 3rd inning when he snared two shots that seemed headed to right field and instead converted them into outs.
As the first pitch was thrown in what was expected to be a heated rematch between two fierce competitors, there was an obvious air of confidence on the part of the mighty River Sharks as they grabbed an early lead and then scored 10 runs with a torrid hitting attack over two later innings to capture their fourth victory of the season, a 13-7 win against an always dangerous Cyclones team at the Merillon Complex. Taking the hill for his third start of the season, Thomas Messina was once again dominant as he limited a hard-hitting Cyclones lineup to 3 runs over four innings with a commanding performance that included 10 strikeouts and only 4 hits with no walks as he earned his second win of the spring. Even more impressive was that of the 47 pitches he threw, 40 were for strikes. Offensively, Messina was 2-for-4 at the plate with 2 doubles, 2 RBIs, a stolen base and a run scored. Lou Mangia got the River Sharks offense off to a quick start with a leadoff home run to deep right field in the top of the first. He followed with a single in each of his next three at-bats in what would become a 4-for-4 day at the plate for the hard-hitting lefty. Mangia was also impressive behind the plate catching the final inning of the game. With two outs in the first, slugger Bryan Wu hit a single to right field and after stealing second base, came around to score on a double to right field off the bat of Max Silverstein who was then caught stealing third base to end the inning. The pair led off the top of the fourth with back-to-back singles and came around to score two of the four River Sharks runs in the inning. Wu ultimately capped off his 3-for-3 performance at the plate with a two-run homer in the top of the fifth that contributed to a 6-run inning. On the mound in relief, Silverstein got roughed up for 4 runs in the bottom of the fifth before leaving the game due to an injury suffered at the top of the inning. Wu came in to close out the inning and struck out the only batter he faced. Thomas Haug had another great game behind the plate holding the Cyclones to just two stolen bases over four innings. On this day however, it was his presence at the plate and his overall offensive showing that dazzled the opposition as Haug went 2-for-3 with an RBI, 3 stolen bases and 2 runs scored. Scott Schanter continues to contribute offensively as he got his first hit of the spring season, an opposite-field triple down the right field line in the top of the fifth that drove in two runs. Schanter continued to display his ever-improving defensive prowess at second base, but it was his running back-handed catch of a line drive to right centerfield while playing right field that robbed the Cyclones of a sure double in the bottom of the fifth. John Napolitano and Michael Mellone combined for 2 base hits, an RBI and a run scored while Mellone added another 2 stolen bases to his Majors resume, tying him for second place on the team with his sixth in only five games. Gregory Capelle added to the bottom line with an RBI while Kyle Forde once again flashed the leather in the field.
In what was shaping up to be an intense rematch between two formidable opponents, the mighty River Sharks found themselves up against an imposing pitching staff but were able to string together some timely hits and then hold off a furious comeback attempt to capture their third victory of the season, a 4-3 win against a resilient Bears team at the Merillon complex. In his second start of the spring, pitcher John Napolitano was once again solid on the hill as he held a relentless lineup to just 2 runs over three innings with a gritty performance that included 6 strikeouts, 2 walks and 4 hits while earning his first win of the season. However, it was a leadoff triple followed by a scorching home run by the Bears in the top of the third that briefly tied the score at 2. Offensively, Napolitano contributed with a single and 2 stolen bases. The River Sharks stormed back in the bottom of the third after Thomas Messina hit a two-out single and after stealing second base, came around to score on a triple to deep centerfield off the bat of slugger Bryan Wu who then stole home. Earlier in the game, Messina hit a two-out double to right field, stole third base and scored on a single to centerfield by Wu. Together, the duo combined for 4 hits, 2 RBIs, 3 stolen bases and 3 runs scored. Max Silverstein once again took the hill in dramatic style for the River Sharks in the top of the fourth and held the Bears to 2 hits and one run while striking out 4 over two innings. Wu came in to close the game in the top of the sixth and after giving up a leadoff double and walk, retired the side to end the game. Lou Mangia made his first appearance of the season for the River Sharks with a hard hit single up the middle in the bottom of the fifth and also showed off some flashy defensive skills throughout the game. Thomas Haug led off the bottom of the second with a hard hit single to centerfield, advanced to second base on a perfectly executed sacrifice bunt by Scott Schanter and came around to score on two consecutive stolen bases. Catching in his fourth straight complete game, Haug had another great outing behind the plate as he limited the Bears to three stolen bases. Schanter continues to display defensive excellence at second base as he just missed turning a double play in the top of the first. Kyle Forde once again flashed the leather in the field. A special thanks to call-ups Peter Carreca and Brett Figelman who both had great at-bats while each patrolled the outfield with authority.
The battling Bears got back in the win column today behind dominant pitching by James Castaldi (4 innings, 1 run, 2 hits, 9K) and Andrew Colgan (2 innings, 0 runs). The Bears scored the first run in the first with a 2-out clutch hit by Joe Dampman. Patrick Devine laced a single in the second and was brought in by another clutch 2-out hit by Andrew Colgan to bring in the Bears’ second run. The Bears really go trolling in the third inning starting with a lead-off single by Dominik Picirrillo and ending with a bases clearing triple by Sean O’Leary to make the score 6-0. The game ended in dramatic fashion with the Cyclones threatening in the bottom of the sixth, when catcher John Denara threw a bullet to third to finish a strike-em-out-throw-em-out double play. The Bears defense was led by James Denara at second base and Michael Zuschlag patrolling the outfield.