No one wants to miss a baseball game, especially when it’s a beautiful afternoon. So when Anderson Valley showed up with only eight players, everyone cheered when the game began with only two outfielders covering left center and right center.
The Panthers found themselves quickly in the field as Titan pitcher Matt O’Brien set down the visitors in order with two strikeouts and groundout to second base.
Then the Titans provided an offensive workout as the first fifteen batters reached base. Eighteen runs crossed the plate. Evan Hermes drove in three runs with two doubles and a single. Sebastiano Piombo pushed across another three with a hit and a bases loaded hit by the pitcher. Kayli Worden, Sam Morrow and Andrew Campbell each added two hits in the offensive barrage.
On defense, O’Brien allowed only two runs during the remainder of his pitching stint. He struck out six and walked only two. After O’Brien finished pitching, the Panthers scored four runs as the final score was 18 to 6.
The Panthers, after surrendering the eighteen runs in the first inning, held the Titans scoreless for the rest of the game. Meanwhile, Coach Mark Meinhofer of the Titans substituted players so that everyone present got into the game. This great opportunity allowed game experience for many players new to baseball at the high school level.
Of the 16 players on the Titans’ roster, nine are freshmen. Three girls are also on Meinhofer’s squad. Annie Campbell, a very solid hitter, had a double, a single and a walk. She also filled in as catcher and fielded her position aggressively. Kayli Worden was the starting second baseman while Jiselle Uribe played outfield.
Both coaches had many things to take away from this game. They can both applaud their players for their conduct on the field and in the dugout. Players may expect some drills on defense and base running, Hearing the coaches talk during the game, workouts on more aggressive hitting approaches may also be on the practice agenda. But one thing is sure, last Fri. afternoon the beautiful game of baseball taught us all that things are best learned by having the game time experience.