Spirits (40+) Stings Killer B’s with 8 to 1 Win

(May 24, 2023 – Carrollton, TX) The Spirits (40+) squad used a 6-run first inning to put a sting on the Killer B’s Wednesday night on Legends Field at Texas Star. The ghosts added another pair of runs in the third and cruised to an 8 to 1 victory in DFW-ABA 40-League action.

Jonathan Duran was solid, shutting down the B’s offense while going the distance. Duran picked up the complete-game win, finishing with 6 innings of work that included an unearned run off of just 3 hits, while walking no one and striking out 3.

The Spirits once again relied on the top half of the lineup to produce offense. Kirk Sipila, Travis Hitzeman, and Eric Goetz led the team as they each finished with 2 hits on the night. Hitzeman added a double, a walk, a pair of runs scored, and an RBI while Goetz finished with a triple, a walk, run scored, and 4 runs batted in. Eric McPherson doubled and scored, and Shawn Lee singled, scored, and walked once.

It appeared over right after it started as the Spirits came out hot in the bottom half of the first. McPherson led the Spirits offense attack with  a double and moved to third after Sipila singled. A follow up RBI single by Hitzeman scored McPherson, and just like that the Spirits held a 1 to 0 advantage. Will Nash popped to the infield but Lee kept things rolling as he singled to load the bases. Goetz followed with a triple to score everybody, and after Mike Sopocy went down swinging, Duane Aponte drew a walk to keep the inning alive. Aponte swiped second and was joined on base by Stacy Scott after he drew a base-on-balls. Both Goetz and Aponte scored after Earl German reached on an error, and the Spirits held at 6 to 0 lead before Brant Finchum flew out to stop the bleeding.

The Spirits made it 8 to 0 in the third after Hitzeman drew a leadoff walk and moved to second after Nash wore a pitch. Lee walked to load the bases. The B’s turned to Allan Ward to replace starter, Brad Raaum at pitcher but patience by Goetz at the plate led to another walk which allowed Hitzeman to score. A sacrifice fly by Sopocy allowed Nash to score before Aponte grounded into a double-play to end the inning.

A double by Michael Scott scored Bobby Boucher, who reached on a Spirits fielding error in the fifth to clear away the egg before the Spirits went on to closeout the 8 to 1 victory.

“Not a bid win tonight,” Lee mentioned afterwards. “The last thing we’ll ever do is complain about a victory. Duran was great on the mound tonight and the defense played pretty solid. We’re showing some small concern at offensive consistency through the lineup. We’ll need everyone to contribute as we look to face some of these top teams for the second time this season down the stretch. Plenty of time left to get hot, and we’ll need to do that before moving into the postseason for this league.”

The Spirits return to action next Wednesday night when they visit the Fighting Chihuahuas on Legends Field at Texas Star. Fans can click here for schedule details.

Game Box Score

Next Level Sports Apparel Players of the Game

Travis Hitzeman (2-2, 2B, R, 2 RBI, BB)

Eric Goetz (2-2, 3B, R, 4 RBI, BB)

Jonathan Duran (6 IP, 0 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 3 K)