Sean Garity took the mound CNHS, nothing overpowering as far as velocity but fastball did have some arm side run. He threw strikes early and often and got groundballs. He would go up against Orangeburg Prep's Andrew Dudley who was also more of a finesse pitcher that worked down in the strikezone.
In the top of the 1st inning Orangeburg Prep's Chris Brown hit a grounder to third to lead off the game, and showed good wheels to easily beat the throw as it wasn't fielded cleanly. Calder West followed by hitting another groundball for what looked to be a fielder's choice but beat it out with his wheels as well. Cleanup hitter Charlie Sutcliff came up with one out and roped a liner to left field and loaded the bases. Garrick Ardis then worked a full count walk to score the games first run. Cardinal Newman would misplay a ground ball to shortstop to allow a couple more runs to come across before the end of the top half of the inning. In the bottom of the 1st Dudley would walk the leadoff batter Nicky Winterstein and Eddie Columbo would line a ball over the shortstop's head with two outs but the Cardinals would not be able to push a run across in the first.
In the top of the 2nd a flare over the shortstop would put OP in business and bring Chris Brown to the plate for his second at-bat in as many innings, and he would promptly line a ball in to left field. Reeves Connelley would approach the plate and proceed to hit a ball to the shortstop that was overthrown plating a couple more runs. Clean up Sutcliff came up with an RBI double. Later a passed ball would allow runners to advance but a strike out looking and fly out closed out OP's offense in the 2nd.
Moving to the bottom half Sean Garity found his way on base, followed by a nice opposite field hit by the left handed hitting third baseman Max Lampl. A walk would load the bases, and catcher Cam Tringali would single up the middle to give himself the RBI for the Cards. Later in the inning Nicky Winterstein would hit a two RBI single to right field. With Runners in scoring position the Dudley was able to get three hole hitter Eddie Columbo to ground out to third base. After two the score was 8-3 OP out in front.
In the 3rd Garity saw the first two batters come up and recorded outs but a couple of two out walks and a hit and run that was bobbled on the infield allowed OP to rally with two down. Again, clean up hitter Sutcliff who was 2-2 came up, and worked a walk to push across another run. Reliever Chris Kolp came on and got the strikeout to get out of the jam in the third.
After two quick outs in the bottom half Max Lampl came up and again smoked a ball to the opposite field. Although his defense was shaky early in the game, he seemed to have settled in nicely in the field and at the dish. Gilroy worked a two out walk but Dudley started to show hitters a sharp breaking ball to work out of the inning. The score remains 9-3.
The top of the 4th innings included a ball hit between the shortstop and third baseman (what some coaches call "the 5.5 hole" or "5 and a half hole") and was beat out for an infield hit. Max Lampl would put an end to the top half with a nice backhand and throw across the diamond to record the third out.
Moving in to the bottom half the number nine hitter would walk, then the leadoff batter would strike out for CN, then a grounder to the right side could not be converted in to an out as the pitcher did not get over to cover first base. Next a hit by pitch would load the bases only for the next batter to hit in to the old 1-2-3 double play.
As we move along to the 5th inning after a fly out and walk, what appeared to be a double play ball was hit but it was booted allowing a first-and-third situation. Sutcliffe and and Ardis would have back-to-back RBI's. Catcher Timmy Schriver would look to continue the scoring but was robbed by centerfielder Nicky Winterstein's diving catch.
The bottom half of the frame Garity would find his way on base due to an error, other than that nothing doing for the Cardinals.
To the top of the 6th we go of what had not been thr prettiest game on this cold night. Marion McCurry was not feeling the effects as the first baseman led off with a double. Two free passes would load the bases for leadoff Chris Brown who hit what could of been a tailor made double play but was able to beat the throw at first to push another run across for OP. More walks and errors plague the Cards, mix in a double by Connolley and the score is 13-3.
The bottom half included a leadoff walk, error in the outfield, followed by another walk. It looked for a moment like these teams must have wanted to keep playing through the cold as it could have been ended by the 10-run rule had OP thrown strikes and made routine plays. The Cards are able to extend the game through a little help from OP.
I moved to my car for the final inning, as I could barely feel my fingers to type! OP was able to ride their comfortable lead to victory but Cardinal Newman did not go down without a fight, as OP's reliever struggled to find the strike zone. Very cold and a game very much filled with walks and errors which paved the way for an easy win for the vistors.
- The game started about 15 minutes late, I am not sure why. I think it is important to be on time. Toward the end of the game it got down to almost freezing cold and you know the boys and fans who are sitting can feel the effects, especially if you have a coach that is long winded during the post game conference.
- Catchers make sure you are not revealing signs to everyone behind you by putting your fingers below your behind! Many teams have a belief that "stealing signs is part of baseball", you think parents won't see a 2 put down and say "sit back Jimmy!"? Whether you agree or not, don't help them out by making it obvious.
- There are some ball players in SCISA, however the depth is not close to what SC's public schools have. Everything is relative. This state may not have the depth that GA, FL, Texas, and California have across the board, but we still have players. There are many powerhouse private school teams in those states. I would love to see a SC private school really put a power baseball program together. Got to get those walks and errors under control though.
- If you do have players, or just in general, please have a roster available for scouts or those covering the game. Giving out a copy of the lineup card puts out the wrong vibe about your program. I had no idea who is a senior or freshman. Put players in ascending order by their jersey number, include height, weight, class, positions, bats/throws, and bonus points if you put GPA/SAT/ACT. You never know who might be watching, but many scouts will flat leave if you don't have a roster.
The battle for Irmo, Dutch Fork @ Irmo in Class AAAA SCHSL action