Dateline: Reston North 2 (formerly North Point)
Rivalry game. After a two week layoff due to Memorial day and a lot of rain this week that washed out two practices, the Ironbirds were ready to go.
Unfortunately, there was so much rain this week and a wet field this morning, that the game was rescheduled to 4PM. Coach Grossman up against his old foes, the Nielson family. For those familiar with the wrapups, the rivalry began when Coach Grossman led a young AA team called the Red Sox against Mike Neilson’s Yankees. What more could one want to start a rivalry?
Check out a couple of games from the ’04 season in which Coach Grossman first faced off against Coach Mike Nielson. First, an early season 9-8 loss to the Neilson coached Yankees and later a 9-2 playoff win over those same Yankees.
Coach Spencer Neilson, the younger brother of Mike is now the head coach of the Bats and thus the friendly rivalry continues. The Nielson coached teams are always well-coached and today’s Bats were no exception. The Ironbirds took the field and those Bats hit the ball hard. In the first inning, bases loaded. The batter hit a hard bouncer back to the mound, Mitchell scooped up the grounder and fired to Matthew at the plate for OUT ONE.
In bottom of the first, Ironbirds bats were on fire. Matthew hit a long shot, Mitchell followed with his own drive. Olivia singled, Michael singled, Mert singled, Trenton singled and Zack beat out an infield hit. Everyone ended up scoring as the Ironbirds offensive barrage was tough to stop.
In the second, the Ironbirds looked sharp. With runners on at first and second, the batter hit a hard grounder to Matthew at short. He charged it, set his feet and threw to Mitchell who was alertly covering third to get the lead runner. The Ironbirds came close to getting a number of other outs.
Offensively the Ironbirds continued to hit the ball and the only Ironbird out on the day occured when Matthew hit a long shot to outfield and the fielder got it and just beat Zack in a footrace to second base.
Coach Grossman was briefly available and said, “I really have to give a lot of credit to our fans. They expected our game to be at 10 and the rain resulted in a six hour delay in start time and a change of venue. These Ironbirds looked great in the field today and I know a late afternoon start in the heat is not easy. I really like how our players are making plays at different bases and I’m looking forward to our practices this week.