MAKING THE MOST OF THEIR OPPORTUNITIES, THE MAJESTIC ROYALS PREVAIL FOR THE VICTORY OVER THE GRITTY ATHLETICS AT BICKFORD PARKBeneath a thick sheath of hazy and humid skies, the Royals prevailed 9-6 over the A’s in four innings of Mosquito Division action this evening at the Bickford Park diamond.
The proceeding was an entertaining and well played affair contested between two talented and well coached teams. In the end, the Royals reigned supreme in the victory column by stymieing the Athletics at key junctures of the game and making the most of the opportunities presented to them.
Exercising patience at the dish, the Royals took advantage of five walks in the top of the first to take an early 4-0 lead. After Jackson (8) led off the inning with a walk, James (6) followed with a single. However, on the play, the A’s committed an error that allowed Jackson to move up to third and James to advance to second. An ensuing wild pitch would open the door for Jackson to blaze home with the opening run of the game.
After Lewis (11) was hit by pitch, Kaenoa (3) drew a walk to load the bases. Matthew (5), Parker (10) and Elayna (12) followed with consecutive RBI walks to bring James, Lewis ans Kaenoa home to roost.
In a gritty effort, A’s starter Owen (10) had a spirited foray on the mound in the first inning.
The A’s would answer with a pair in the bottom of the first to slice the deficit to two. After leading off the frame with a walk, Stefano (9) would swipe a pair of bases to reach third. From that advantageous perch, Stefano would seize the moment and brazenly steal home to plate the A’s first run.
With two outs, Finn would be hit by pitch. After reaching third on a wild pitch and a stolen base, Finn would steal home in grand theft style.
Shaken, but not stirred, Royals starter Kaenoa (3) would strike out two in the bottom of the first to quell the Athletics uprising.
Kaenoa was also helped out by nice 2-5 defensive putout during the first. As Owen (10) made a two out bid to steal third, Royals catcher Mekai (14) launched a cannon throw to third baseman Elayna, who applied the tag on Owen to record the third out of the inning.
A’s reliever Anthony (12) would strike out one in the top of the second to keep the Royals off the scoresheet.
In the bottom of the second, the A’s scored a run to trim the margin to 4-3. After leading off the inning with a walk, Eli (15) would advance to third on a wild pitch and stolen base. A Royals error on the successful steal of third would allow Eli to come homeward bound.
Feasting upon a Royals buffet offering of three walks, the A’s would load the bases. However, Royals reliever Jackson (8) would find the groove and strike out three to leave the bases stranded.
The Royals would tally four in the top of the third to widen their lead to 8-3. After James and Lewis drew a pair of walks to lead off the inning, Kaenoa followed with a 2 RBI double to bring them home. Subsequently, after stealing third, Kaenoa would motor home on an A’s error.
After Matthew, Parker and Elayna garnered consecutive walks to load the bases, Mekai stroked a RBI single to plate Matthew.
Royals southpaw reliever Lewis (11) would strike out one in the bottom of the third to keep the A’s off the scoreboard.
The Royals defense also shone brightly in the third on a nifty 7-8-1 putout. After powering a double to left field, Owen tried to stretch his hit into a triple. However, Royals left fielder Elayna retrieved the ball and made a strong throw to cutoff man and centre fielder Jackson. Jackson pivoted and made a laser throw to Lewis (who was covering third), who applied the tag on a sliding Owen to record the third out.
In the top of the fourth, the Royals would tack on an insurance run to increase their advantage to 9-3. After Rory (2) led off the inning with a double, Dashiell (15) walked and Jackson singled to load the bases. James followed with a RBI single to plate Rory.
A’s reliever Daniel (4) would strike out one in the fourth to extinguish the Royals insurrection.
Daniel was also helped out mightily on a nice solo double play effort by third baseman Seb (3). With one out and the bases loaded, Kaenoa crunched a screaming line drive down the third baseline. However, Seb flashed his leather and nabbed the scorching red hot tamale liner in the shoestrings of his glove to rob Kaenoa of a hit and chalk up the second out. Noticing that the Royals baserunner had strayed too far from third, Seb hustled over to tag out the wayfaring Royal and record the third out and tally an unassisted double play.
Refusing to surrender, the A’s donned their rally caps in the bottom of the fourth in a feverish comeback bid. After Eli and Anthony led off the inning with back to back walks to put two ducks on the pond, Sasha and Daniel followed with respective sacrifice hits to bring Eli and Anthony home.
After garnering a two out walk, Daniel (16) would steal second. On the successful steal play, the Royals would commit an error that allowed Daniel to motor home and trim the shortfall to three.
However, Royals reliever Lewis would strike out the next batter to seal the deal on hard fought win over the gritty A’s.