Friday, July 29, 2011

Early Lead Holds Up, Bullets Top WNYC

The DC Bullets ran their New York Media Softball League record to 5-1 Thursday evening with a 10-7 win over WYNC. Playing shorthanded - with only three outfielders and without one of their most fearsome hitters - the determined WNYC team made quite a game of it, but DC jumped ahead early, taking a 10-3 lead after three innings, and held on to secure the win.

WNYC came out strong in the first inning, hitting solid line drives and running the bases aggressively. They tallied three quick runs in the first to put pressure on DC; however, the Bullets put themselves quickly back into the game. Neil Hiremath led off with a double into shallow centerfield, again, and Mike Lorah followed with a drive to deep center that plated two runs. The next hitter, Travis Hastback, sprinted to second on his gapper, making three consecutive extra base hits. WNYC nearly got out of the inning with the lead when John Choi flew out and Brian Walters popped up, but LP Vollano unleashed a bomb to deep left field. The triple tied the game, and LP rumbled home with the go-ahead run on Christine Napolitano's line base hit. After a Pat Brosseau single, Sal Cipriano flew out to left field.

After holding WNYC scoreless in the second, DC extended the lead: Larry Ganem lined a single past a diving shortstop. After 2011-debuting Allison Klein popped up (just getting the rust off) and Blake Kobashigawa flew out to left, Vince Letterio drew a five-pitch walk. Mike then ripped a ground ball just past the shortstop for an RBI single, and Travis drilled a two-run triple into the rightcenterfield gap. John flew out to end the frame.

The comic book makers struck again in the third, as LP singled with one out. CNap's fielder's choice took him off the board, but a two-out single from Pat gave Sal a chance, and Sal took advantage. The Bullets' captain launched a high fly down the left field line, hooking into the corner where it cleared the fence in fair territory - a three-run homer, and the Bullets' first over-the-fence long ball on their home field this summer. Larry doubled, but froze at second on Allison's bloop single. Blake grounded to third, where Larry was easily forced for the final out.

Despite the early offense, the Bullets went quietly over the final three innings. Neil singled in the fourth, but Mike's fielder's choice and fly outs from Travis and John netted nothing. CNap singled with two outs in the fifth, and we folded in order in the sixth.

WNYC's shock jocks, meanwhile, couldn't push a run across during the middle innings. Going into the sixth, their run count remained stuck on three. But things started to fall in again, and a couple questionable defensive plays by the Bullets afforded them an extra out and some extra bases. In the end, WNYC crossed the plate four more times, tightening the game. No surprise there: every game between these two teams comes down to the last inning.

However, top seven, crafty Larry Ganem set the opposition down quickly, inducing a pop-up to Brian at shortstop, a routine fly to Neil in left center, and then wrapping the game himself with his third strikeout of the afternoon (his second consecutive start with three Ks, I should note here - though the Marvel game didn't end as well).

Thanks to WNYC. The league standings say we won two this year, but forget that forfeit - the "for-fun" game that day stuck to the yearly WNYC-DC script: a season split. Hopefully we'll see you in the playoffs!

13-6 (5-1 NYMSL), the Bullets face High Times next Thursday, North Meadow #2. Both teams currently sport 5-1 NYMSL records, with High Times holding the tie-breaker due to their win over DC earlier this summer, so this is a big game for both squads.

Bullet Box:
LCF Neil Hiremath 2-2, R / LCF Vince Letterio - 0-0, R, BB
3B Mike Lorah - 2-3, 2 R, 3 RBI, home run
LF Travis Hastback - 2-3, R, 2 RBI, double, triple
RCF John Choi - 0-3
SS Brian Walters - 0-3
DH LP Vollano - 2-3, R, RBI, triple
RF Christine Napolitano - 2-3, R, RBI
RCF Pat Brosseau - 2-3, R
1B Sal Cipriano - 1-3, R, 3 RBI, home run
P Larry Ganem - 2-3, R, double
2B Allison Klein - 1-3
C Blake Kobashigawa - 0-2

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