RIGHT DOWN THE MIDDLE — Hayden Goodridge sends one to center field. Goodridge went 1 for 3, during the game against Fredonia. Photo by Katie Kostelny.
SPRINGVILLE — Springville-Griffith Institute junior varsity baseball pitcher Matt Sobota started the game on the mound, with four strikeouts in five innings. After a quiet first inning, Fredonia was able to score in the second. Good contact landed the ball in left field and placed runners on second and third bases, putting players in scoring positions. Springville went into the bottom of the inning down by 2, with Sobota up to bat. Sobota managed to hit a single, and then steal second base with Ian Baker, who plays the catcher position, up to bat. Springville came up empty-handed, though, going into the third, still down 2-0. The first batter for Fredonia hit a pop fly to Hayden Goodridge for an out, but came storming back. With runners on base, a hit to right field sent 2 more runs in for Fredonia, putting the opponent up 4-0. The next batter followed up with a bunt that resulted in another run.
In the bottom of the third, Austin Coon was up for the Griffins. He drilled the ball deep into left field for a double. Next up to bat was Zach Swank, who used a sacrifice bunt to place Coon in scoring position at third base. Goodridge stepped up to the plate and drove the ball into center field for an RBI, with Coon scoring for Springville.
Innings four, five and six were scoreless, but were not without big plays. During Springville’s next at-bat, Baker had a hit to center field for a single and then stole second. In the top of the fifth, a Fredonia batter popped the ball up behind Baker, who made a catch as he fell to the dirt.
In the seventh and final inning, both teams were able to score. Fredonia scored first, with a runner in scoring position. The Fredonia batter hit the ball to second baseman Goodridge, who threw the ball to first basemen Trevor Bunch for the out, but the runner was able to make it home from third and score.
Fredonia didn’t stop there. With a runner on second, the batter hit to center field for another RBI, giving Fredonia a 7-1 lead. The Griffins had a strong last at-bat. Sobota stepped up to the plate and hit a single. Baker was next up to bat, but hit the ball to the second basemen, who was able to get Sobota out at second, leaving Baker on first. Baker then stole second and later third base, putting him in a strong scoring position. With Damen Skinner up to bat, the Fredonia pitcher threw the ball over the catcher’s head and Baker was able to steal home, to give the Griffins another run in.
Hits for the Griffins came from Baker, at 2-for-3; Goodridge, at 1-for-3; Sobota, at 2-for-3; Coon, at 1-for-2 and Skinner, at 1-for-2. The final score was 7-2 Fredonia.
“No pitchers gave up any earned runs; they were all off of errors. So [we need to] clean up the play in the field and we need to work on making better contact with the ball and hit better,” said coach Jake Domes, of how the team can improve. “But overall, the pitchers did an awesome job.”
“I think that we need to be smarter at the plate,” Coons noted. John Domes added, “We need to improve on seeing the ball better and working on costly errors.”