Baseball edges out Titans with offensive strength
MARCH 21, BLAZER STADIUM-
Up until the bottom of the sixth inning of their 3-2 season-opener victory, Blair looked shaky out on the field. They were down by two after the Titans scored twice in the fifth inning, and were consistently stranding base runners.
All that changed, however, when junior Avi Wolfman-Arent stepped up to bat and drove a spectacular two-run homer over the centerfield fence to score senior Cody Simpson, who had reached first base on an error by Einstein's second baseman. After senior Ben Nakamura walked and was driven in by junior Sam Morris, Blair had a 3-2 lead, and had only to hold Einstein through the top of the seventh inning, which they did with ease, to chalk up their first victory of the 2005 season
The first inning found junior Doug Friedman starting on the mound. Friedman had control problems throughout the four and a third innings he pitched, but also delivered three strikeouts before he handed the game over to Morris in the fifth. Despite allowing one walked runner to steal second, Blair had a solid first inning in the field, and senior Chris Madert displayed defensive prowess at third base with the first of what would be several solid plays.
Blair's offense in the early innings was certainly present, but the team, even in the heart of its line-up, could not produce any solid threat. The Blazers as a group struck out eight times this game, and did not have a runner reach third base until the sixth inning.
Blair's defense began to unravel in the top of the fifth, when, with one out, a fly ball dropped between junior Tommy Dugan and senior Justin Roman in right-centerfield. The Einstein runner immediately stole second base and then third after a wild pitch from Friedman got away from junior catcher Lee Shields. Friedman then walked three consecutive batters, allowing the runner on third to score. Coach John MacDonald pulled Friedman and replaced him with Morris, who, after allowing one more run, saw the inning come to a close with a ground-out to sophomore shortstop Dylan Rebois and a pop-up to Nakamura at second.
Both teams' bats stayed quiet until the sixth, when Wolfman-Arent, who was three-for-three this game with a single, a walk and the home run, drove in Simpson. After Morris batted in Nakamura, both Rebois and Roman reached on walks, yet the inning ended before any of the three base runners could score.
The game would end on a bright note, as Rebois came in to close and performed impressively from the rubber with two strikeouts and a play at first to end the game.
Coach John MacDonald was not overly pleased with this less-than dominant win, saying that "we won by the skin of our teeth." He was especially disappointed that the Blazers had so much trouble hitting Einstein's pitching. However, he pointed to strong clutch hits late in the game and good performances by all three pitchers as the reasons for Blair's win.
Blair next plays at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 23 at Watkins Mill.
Ellie Blalock. Ellie is a SENIOR in the CAP program at Blair. She enjoys such activities as traveling, being able to say "water" in six languages and having heart-to-heart chats with eccentric politicians. If you're in need of a laugh, please ask Ellie about her driving record...you … More »