Following a 1-2 start to the summer season, the Bears Blue baseball team recovered nicely with three wins, all in different ways.
The team hosted Cocalico on Wednesday, June 6, walking away with a come-from-behind 4-1 victory. Cocalico was able to score a run early in the top of the second inning when Tristan Current singled, advanced to second on a fielder’s choice and finally came home on a two-out RBI base knock from Ian Martin.
The 1-0 score held firm past the fifth inning, as both teams struggled to stay consistent at the plate. Martin was strong on the mound for Cocalico, as was Josh Kreider for Bears Blue. The two combined to allow just 7 hits in the first five frames.
However, Elizabethtown fought back in the bottom of the sixth. Pinch hitter Cole Hitz walked and was able to beat out a throw to second off a grounder from Hunter Murry, who reached first and was replaced by courtesy runner Westin Kolaric. Both Hitz and Kolaric advanced on a wild pitch from relief pitcher Hunter Keller, and Hitz was brought in on a game-tying single from Kyle Welch, though Kolaric was tagged at the plate.
Welch then scored on a double from Michael Baker, who was then brought home on a single from Josh Kreider. Zach Malone took over as a courtesy runner and later stole home when Keller tried to pick off Aiden Masters at first. In the top of the seventh, Josh Kreider bowed out in favor of Masters, who picked up the final two outs to give Bears Blue the win.
Josh Kreider was clutch both hitting- and pitching-wise. In addition to his RBI single in the sixth, he went 6 1/3 innings on the mound, allowing just 4 hits and 2 walks while striking out 5 batters. Welch was strong as well; he went 3-for-3 at the plate with two singles and a double. Masters was right behind him with 2 hits.
Most of Cocalico’s offense came in the first two innings; they had just one hit (a bunt single from Gaven Zwally) after the second. Martin carried the team for the most part, having their lone RBI on offense and allowing just 3 hits and no runs in five innings of work at pitcher. Keller took the loss, allowing 4 hits and 4 runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Bears Blue went on the road the next day, traveling to Garden Spot on Thursday, June 7. They thoroughly dominated, winning 14-1 in five innings. Garden Spot got their lone run in the first after Joe Royle was hit by a pitch and scored on a bases-loaded walk from Colby Forrester.
However, Elizabethtown escaped when Baker snared a grounder to the mound and initiated a 1-2-3 double play to end the inning. He proceeded to put out the remaining 12 batters, finishing with 3 strikeouts and allowing just a single hit and run.
Elizabethtown batted around in the top of the second, scoring 7 runs. One came on a wild pitch that scored Hunter Stewart and two more came from a passed ball that brought in Josh Kreider and Anthony Russo. Tyler Souders came home on an RBI from Masters, who later scored on another wild pitch. Kolaric also scored on another passed ball, and Nick Kreider was finally doubled in by Welch.
Hitz nailed a double that brought home Stewart and Josh Kreider in the third. Baker also hit a double to score Welch and Nick Kreider in the fourth, later scoring on an RBI single from Josh Kreider. The latter scored alongside Justin Black on a single from Jace Bock to round out the scoring for Bears Blue.
Josh Kreider went 3-for-3 at the plate, all of them singles, also notching a game-high 3 runs and tying Baker for the lead in RBIs with 2. Dylan Crosson struggled on the mound for Garden Spot, allowing 10 hits and hitting 3 batters with pitches. Only half of Elizabethtown’s runs were earned, however.
Bears Blue was scheduled to play Pequea Valley at home on Monday, June 11. However, the opposition had to forfeit due to a lack of players, giving Elizabethtown the win. The team had three games set next; two away (at Hempfield Black on Wednesday, June 13, and at Columbia on Monday, June 19) and one at home (Penn Manor on Thursday, June 14).