RUN FOR IT — Springville-Griffith Institute athlete Kyle Crotty rounds the bases, during a home run he hit against North Collins. Photos by Dave DeLuca.
SPRINGVILLE — The cold weather has had an impact on spring sports throughout Western New York and has kept the Springville-Griffith Institute varsity baseball team indoors.
The first day the Griffins headed outside also marked the date of their first game. On April 4, the boys traveled to Fredonia, to play a nonleague doubleheader. The team dropped the first game 5 – 2.
Tyler Conklin led the offensive attack with a RBI double in the third inning, and a single. Springville scored 2 runs in the third, to tie the game, but Fredonia pushed across 1 run, in the fourth and 2 runs, in the fifth, to pull out the victory, for the team.
In the second leg of the doubleheader, Springville got on the scoreboard first, with 1 run, in the second inning, but Fredonia erupted, in the bottom of the second, for 11 runs. Springville scored 1 run, in the top of the third, but couldn’t get the bats going and lost 19 – 4. Sophomore Kyle Crotty led offense, with two singles and two RBIs.
OUT OF THE PARK — Drew Scharra hits one over the fence, during a game against North Collins.
Springville plays an annual, nonleague slate of games, during spring break. The nonleague games act as scrimmages and extensive practice time, for the team, according to Coach Ron Tamraz.
“The preseason is used to see what we have to work on,” Tamraz said. “It’s used to see what guys can handle; the various positions, by putting them in different situations and seeing how they do, so we can get ready for the league games that count.”
On April 5, the Griffins traveled to North Collins, to take on the host Eagles. Springville scored runs early and often, on the way to a 19 – 0 triumph, for the team’s first win, of the season. Conklin had 4 hits and four RBIs, to pace the offense. Jon Weronski added two singles and four RBIs, during the win.
On April 8, the team played Tonawanda, for the final tune-up game, before its league schedule.
Crotty hit a 3-run double, in the top of the first, to put the Griffs on the board first and make the score 3 – 0.
WAY TO GO — Drew Scharra (left) and Kyle McCarthy (right) high-fived Kyle Crotty, after he made a home run.
Drew Scharra started the game on the mound, for Springville, and struck out five players. Springville took a 4 – 0 lead, in the top of the third inning, but the host Warriors got on the board with a run, in the bottom half of the third. The Warriors added 2 more runs, in the fourth, and Springville added a run in the fifth, to increase its lead to 5 – 3.
The Griffs were unable to keep the 2-run lead and the Warriors took advantage of a couple of Springville miscues, to tie the game at 5 – 5. With the bases loaded, Tonawanda drew a bases loaded walk, to push a runner across to home plate and Springville dropped its final nonleague showdown 6 – 5.
The team went 1 – 3, during its preseason, nonleague schedule.
After the Tonawanda game, the boys were able to get outside, for their first practice, on an actual baseball diamond. Springville was set for the first league game on April 10, against Cheektowaga, but the matchup was rescheduled, due to rain.
Tamraz said the team experienced a little “sloppy” play, during the team’s first four games, and that players need to work out the kinks.
“The only thing we really can do is get outside and practice,” Tamaraz said. “You can only do so much, indoors. Mother Nature has always been tough on Western New York baseball, to begin with. That’s part of what the [nonleague] games are for. Practices help, but games put the kids in different situations and there’s a little bit more pressure, for the kids to perform.”
The boys are set to play Depew on April 15.