The CF Patriots found themselves in a scoring fest with South Georgia State College at Goodlett Field on Friday afternoon. The Patriots used every last at-bat they had, when Will Reddick’s walk-off two-run home run won it for the Patriots in the bottom of the 9th inning with two outs 20-19. Each team piled runs on the board and easily racking up hits on the opposing pitcher. The two teams combined for 39 runs and 41 hits on the day.
Despite the win CF Baseball Coach Marty Smith was not entirely happy with how his team played overall today. “We were really sloppy; our pitchers did not compete and make the pitches we needed them to make,” said Smith. “We did not pitch well overall, defensively not very well either but thank God offensively we made up for some of those mistakes.”
Patriots’ starting pitcher, Ryan Aspinwall, struggled on the mound today. Aspinwall lasted just 3.1 innings pitched giving up 10 hits and 7 runs, 4 of which were earned runs. Today’s winning pitcher Kyle Hansen did not have much success at the mound today either, finishing the game with 3 innings pitched, 5 hits and 5 runs allowed, yet only 2 runs were earned.
The Patriots found themselves already in an early hole after allowing three runs in the top of the first inning. They were able to quickly answer back by putting up three runs of their own. Two of the three runs occurred when, John Cassala, homered to right field. The home run was just part of Cassala’s impressive performance at the plate today. Cassala finished the day 4-5 with 4 runs and 6 RBI.
“We had a lot of fight today,” said Cassala. “Whatever aspect is lacking you got to pick it up. We made a few errors today and we were not pitching as well as we usually do but we were lucky our offense could pick up our other aspects of the game.”
The Patriots biggest inning offensively came in the bottom of the 5th. The Patriots put eight runs on the board that inning. Three of those eight runs came off the bat of Luke Heyer that inning when Heyer launched a three-run home run over the center field wall. Heyer was another Patriot to lead the offensive attack finishing the day 3-4 with 3 runs and 4 RBI.
“We have been swinging it well lately and putting up big numbers every game, said Heyer. “It is really crucial every inning to answer back and put up something. Sometimes it wasn’t always to get back into the game but it was something to just keep the offense going. It is really good to see the team rally together like that and put it together when it mattered.”
The Patriots found themselves down 19-17, when they entered the bottom of the ninth inning. The Patriots scored their first run of the ninth when Evan Holland hit a sacrifice fly that scored Luke Heyer. Will Reddick stepped up to the plate later that inning and launched the game-winning walk-off home run over the left field wall.
“We had a lot of miscues but we battled and won, and at the end of the day that is all that matters,” said Reddick. “I think our offense has been our strength all year. We have days when the pitchers are dead on, but those days they are not it puts even more pressure on the offense to be good.”
Will Reddick described after the game what his final at-bat was like. “It was actually kind of weird, said Reddick.” “I went up there, I always say a prayer when I go up there and I just had this piece and calm feeling about me. I watched a curveball in the dirt and I just knew he was throwing a fastball for whatever reason. The good Lord let me hit it out and that is how we did it.”
Story by: Brandon Wilson