In two pivotal games that could have increased their chances for postseason play and their overall record, they dropped both games to the Rockville Express.
The detrimental occurrences started for the Aces in the beginning of the first game. After facing three batters, Aces starter Noah Abdallah (Georgetown) left the game with a serious injury in his pitching arm. Nicholas Sadd (Bucknell) then pulled a Clark Kent-Superman transition, in a first inning that lasted 45 minutes. Sadd transitioned from shorts and a t-shirt to a full uniform and warmed up in a non-traditional way. He would pitch five innings of three run baseball. Not bad for a kid who had a 20 minute warmup, when it normally takes 90 minutes to prepare for a scheduled start (thanks to Wyatt Rush-Lansing CC for the information).
In the first, second, and third innings, the Aces had runners in scoring position with one out or less and failed to score in those innings. The Express countered with RBI’s from Evan Blum (Holy Cross College), Matt Coston (NC Central), and Jarel McDade (Tusculum College) in the first three innings to take a 3-0 lead. Sadd would allow those three runs, yet the Aces would pull a late comeback in the bottom of the sixth inning. Kris Kremer (Penn State) hit an RBI double to cut the score to 3-1. Chris Alleyne (Maryland) steals home to make the score 3-2. Then Luke Balanger (Radford) knocks in an RBI single to tie the game at three. The game would go to extra innings (each game was seven innings due to rainouts), and the Express would score two runs in the eighth to take the first game 5-3.
In game number two, it was tied at one for five and a half innings. Blum hit an RBI single in the first game to give the Express a 1-0 lead. The Aces would respond with a sac-fly in the fourth inning. In the bottom of the sixth inning with the score tied at one, the Aces had the bases loaded with two outs with one of the leaders, Ethan Cady (East Tennessee State) at the plate. This is a spot where big time players make big time plays. With a 3-1 count the umpire called a strike that was so significantly outside of the strike zone, that even kids in little league knew not to swing at a pitch like that. With the count full, Cady went down looking on strikes on a pitch with similar location as the previous one.
The Express would take advantage of their opportunities, batting around the lineup and putting five runs on the scoreboard to win game two by a score of 6-1. Despite Cole Lalonde (Century CC) pitching 4.2 innings of one-run baseball with six strikeouts, the Aces did not hit well and did not take advantage of their opportunities with runners in scoring position.
Tomorrow’s a new day and a new game against the DC Grays. Coverage begins on Aces radio at 7pm.