East Lansing - (AP) On a night where everything came together, the WILX News team secured its first-ever winning season by sweeping a doubleheader.
After recording the first two outs of Game 1, 5/3 Bankrollers (6-2) allowed the next 9 WILX batters to reach base. Jason Colthorp ignited the 8-run rally by scooting to third on a base hit to right. Becky Grant followed with an RBI base hit. Jeff Proctor's bases-loaded single and two more bases-loaded walks did most of the damage in the first. It turned out to be more than enough to knock off the first-place team 14-4.
Brian Hirten turned in the defensive play of the night in right-center field. Streaking in to gobble up a base hit, Hirten made an off-balance throw to force a runner at 2nd base, which eventually helped WILX (6-3) get out of the inning with no runs allowed.
Game 2 started out much different. Facing Heart Attacks (0-8), the newsies found themselves down 2-1 going into the bottom of the third. Hirten highlighted a 6-run inning with a 2-run home run to center. One inning later with the score 7-3, WILX exploded for 10 runs. Chris Gervat laced a triple to center to score Jamie Edmonds and Colthorp followed with a double to score Gervat and Lauren Zakalik. Proctor later added a run-scoring triple to further the damage.
It won't show in the box score, but Shelly Foster may have been the team's most outstanding player in the wins. She came up with key base hits in both games and at 2nd base in Game 2, Foster made a number of putouts to end rallies and save runs. Also stellar in the field was Matt Ondecker, coming up with numerous throws in the dirt over at 1st base. Andy Provenzano again proved his glove is where line drives go to die, snaring another rocket while pitching a masterful first game.
Next week WILX takes on the former Fox 47 team now called Team Macias at 8:25 at the East Lansing Aquatic Center.
After the 17-3 win in Game 2, WILX had accomplished one of its goals at the beginning of the year-- a winning season.
"You gotta play 'em one game at a time," said Manager Jeff Proctor. "We've really played well as a team this season and stayed focused on good at-bats."
"After the last two seasons, this win is sweet."
Following the games, WILX notched another victory. It won the Reno's Softball Contest i.e. the team with most people at the bar over the course of the season. To the victors went the spoils-- four pizzas on the house.
"You gotta drink 'em one beer at a time," said Proctor. "We've really drank well as a team this season and stayed focused on good hoists."