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Softball Report, June 11 » Valleybrook: 11, Eastside Hill Nightcrawlers: 1

Submitted by Editor on June 21, 2010 – 9:51 pm | Print or Email »One Comment

Nightcrawlers close the gap on Valleybrook Church
by Joe Thielen, manager

The Nightcrawlers laid down another night of spectacular defense to hold Valleybrook Church to just 11 runs on Tuesday.  Phil Garvey had a banner night at third base, stopping nearly a dozen ground balls at the hot corner and making several unassisted putouts. In the ultimate sacrifice for his team, Andy Plank laid his finger on the line in stopping a groundball at shortstop. Plank left the game with a demolished and broken middle finger. “I’m still upset that I missed the play at first base after it happened!” Plank remarked, “I guess maybe the fact that I heard something snap should justify the long throw, but I would’ve felt better had I thrown the guy out after breaking my finger. There’s always next time I guess.”

Ken Symanski, recovered from his recent bout of the Rocking Pneumonia, pitched a wonderful game, issuing only one walk in 5 innings of play.  After a nearly adequate performance against Valleybrook in May, the Eastside Hill team can safely say its performance has been moved to adequate, on an official level. Errors were minimal after a rough set of opening innings, and the team worked its way out of jams several times with solid fielding, limiting runs wherever possible.

Unfortunately for the Nightcrawlers, a night of “officially adequate” defense was not enough to keep the neighborhood team in the game. Valleybrook’s defense proved to be outstanding, limiting the Nightcrawlers to just one run.  Mark Schueller scored from third on a sacrifice fly from Kristi Dussett to put the game at 7-1 in the bottom of the 3rd inning.  This would be the end of the team’s offensive production, and the group gave up 4 more runs over the course of the next three innings to lose by the ten-run rule.  Once again, the Lady Nightcrawlers led the team in hits and showed some serious hustle, including infield singles by Sara Thielen and Kelly Frasier. The Nightcrawlers stranded 4 base-runners over the course of the game, unfortunately, as the hits were far and few between.

Overall, although offense was sparse, “Credit goes to their defense,” remarked manager Joe Thielen. “We were hitting the ball really well, but they happened to have players positioned right there every time. Honestly, it was frustrating to see line-drive after line-drive snagged in the outfield. But it is what it is, you move on, you go to the bar afterwards, you wake up the next morning with a slight headache, you wonder if you could have been an astronaut or a cowboy instead of a salesman, and you plot for next week.”

Joe Thielen manages the Eastside Hill Nightcrawlers, and puts his cheese spread in the refrigerator in order to keep it from spoiling.

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