Dateline: Nike Field #1
It was a pleasant evening as Coach Grossman asked Thomas for his thoughts on the coin toss. He suggested “heads.” Coach Grossman called HEADS and it was a winner. Coach Grossman elected to be the home team and the Reston American team filed into the first base dugout.
Conor went to the mound and looked great. He struck out the first two and got the third batter to hit a soft liner to Justin at first who made a great play for out three. Conor then led off with a sharp double, Pete walked and Kent walked to load the bases. With no outs things looked good but unfortunately no one scored. After one it was 0-0.
In the second, Conor struck out the first batter, got the next to hit a tailing fly ball to right that Johnny tracked down perfectly and the next batter singled. Brendan then picked the batter off and a run down ensued. After a couple of throws too many for this reporter, Pete ran down the tired running and ended the inning. In the bottom of the second, Reston American threatened again. Patrick hit a sharp single to left but he was caught by a step at second as he attempted to advance on a ball that bounced off the catcher. Graham walked, Conor singled but two more runners were left on base. After two it was still a 0-0 thriller.
In the third, the leadoff man was extremely fortunate and got a hold of a Conor fastball and took it over the center field wall. This served to irritate Conor and he quickly struck out the next two batters. The last batter hit a ball out to to right that Johnny again tracked down for out three. Reston American went down quietly and after three the team trailed 1-0.
In the fourth, Conor threw nine pitches to the 2-3-4. Nine pitches in a row were strikes and the side was done. After one out, Josh walked, Thomas and Graham were on base after the Great Falls defense ran into some troubles. Bases loaded, one out. Conor at the plate with a 2-1 count. He drove a hard shot to right center a bases clearing double. Pete reached on an infield hit and Sam singled to left to pick up an RBI as Conor scored. Brendan singled to score Pete. After four, it was 5-1 Reston American.
Conor stayed on the mound and looked sharp. He got the first batter to popup to the mound, struck out the next batter. After a weak infield hit, he struck out another batter.
Conor finished his outing with ten strikeouts and only three hits and no walks. In the bottom of the fifth, Reston American picked up some insurance runs as Johnny led off with a single, Graham singled and Conor singled to score Johnny and Graham. Pete singled to pick up another RBI. After five it was 8-1 Reston American.
Kent came out of the bullpen and after a leadoff pair of singles and a bad throw to third, two runs had scored. Kent settled down and got the next batter on a ground out back to the mound. After an infield hit, the next batter grounded out to Pete at short who fired to Jordan at first for out two and the last batter hit a bouncer back to the mound that Kent fielded and threw to Jordan for the last out. Reston American fans celebrated.
Coach Grossman said, “I really didn’t do a good job getting the team up for this game, but its hard to get up after two big wins. However, we kept battling and again the bats at the bottom of our order started things off. Conor had a great day at the plate and on the mound and Kent did the job again for us in the sixth. I’m looking forward to our next game already.”