(April 24, 2017 – Dallas, TX) We’ve all heard the old phrase, “mess with the bull and you’ll get the horns.” Turns out the Spirits (45+) squad wanted both the bull and the horns Monday night at Reverchon Park in Uptown, Dallas. The Spirits used 14 hits to score 14 runs, while capitalizing on 7 Dallas Bulls errors as they cruised to a 14 to 5 victory boosting their record to 3-0 in NTABL Masters League play.
Starting pitcher, Earl German cruised through three innings, allowing only one unearned run to cross home plate as he struck out two and walked another Bulls hitter, and allowed only 4 hits. With a commanding 11 to 1 lead going into the bottom of the fourth, John Holmquist replaced German to potentially close out the game, however the Bulls had late game heroics in mind. The Bulls were able to somehow poke holes in the Spirits defense, taking advantage on short infield pop-ups and Texas-league style hits just out of reach of the infield to play a bit of merry-go-round. Holmquist struck out Joseph Lane to begin the inning, but Paul Adams followed with a single and moved to second after Chris Goodwin reached on a Spirits error. Chris Huggins then singled within the infield to load the bases. Jim Crombie followed up by reaching on a fielder’s choice squeezing Adams at home and it appeared the Spirits might get out of the inning. Jeff Jones had a different scenario in mind as he blooped a hit over shortstop, Kirk Sipila to rotate the runners and to score Goodwin. Chris Taylor also singled to score Huggins and John Crossley rolled a fifteen footer out of the box to score Crombie on yet another infield single. Despite the Bulls ability to find any way to get on, Holmquist remained poised and took the team out of the inning by striking out Scott Christiansen.
The Spirits rallied for another three runs in the top half of the fifth before giving up one last run to the Bulls, finishing the game due to time limit. German carried his own weight offensively as well, going 3 for 3 from the dish, scoring 3 times and knocking in 2 runs. Designated hitter, Eric McPherson who is still nursing off-season rotator-cuff surgery was also perfect from the plate, going 2 for 2 with a pair of singles and 2 runs scored. Guy Koenig was also 2 for 2 and a run scored. First baseman, Chris Lewis remained on fire going 2 for 3 with a pair of singles, a run scored, and a run batted in. Sipila finished 1 for 1, with a sacrifice fly and 3 RBI, while catcher, Patrick Bilgere and left fielder, Shawn Lee each doubled in the game. Lee finished with 2 runs scored and contributed an RBI as well.
The Spirits return to action next Monday night as they visit the perennial power Dallas Orioles on Graham Field at 8:45PM.