Another great weekend turnout brought 19 faces to the Ridgewood Field ballpark last weekend in Rock Island. The weekend before, VLB had 20 players and the second weekend had a massive 24 players. The league is prospering much more than last year or even the majority of 2014.
The home team prevailed both games this past weekend as Donny Reul's Squad and Josh Paul's Goonies went head-to-head both games.
The Squad was shut out 16-0 in their first and only meeting against the Goonies earlier in the season. It didn't take long for them to start scoring runs on Saturday, as they put up four in the first and another three in the third, taking a "comfortable" 9-2 lead. However, no lead in Veto League play is safe, as the Goonies were able to put the tying and potential winning runs on base, down 10-9 with two outs in the last inning. Adlonis Hopkins was able to get Jay Clark to pop up to end the game.
The Squad was led by rookie debut Nick "Swanny" Swanson's 3-for-4 with four RBI and another rookie, Greg Hixson's, two extra base hits. The Goonies were led by lead-off hitter Boo Jarrett, who went 4-for-5 with two runs, scoring three RBI and hitting his second career VLB homerun.
Game two wasn't as close, as the Goonies roared out of the batter's box scoring 7, 8 and 7 runs in each of the first three innings. With a mercy rule in effect, the Squad survived the fourth inning by plating three, but the Goonies held on for the 20-run five-inning rule, winning 25-5.
The Squad (2-2) was able to collect 13 hits in the five innings, however, had just one extra-base hit. They were led by the debut of Earl Hickman's 3-for-3.
Hixson and Swanson again put up impressive slash lines for the Goonies (3-2), combining for 9-for-10 with six runs and seven RBI, also collecting seven extra-base hits. It took veteran Scott Raes just three innings to hit for the cycle, as he finished a perfect 5-for-5 with five runs and four RBI.
In other news, a new jersey order was placed at Temples in addition to jerseys being dropped off for lettering and numbering. Those will be available to be picked up on the June 4 game.
Play continues this weekend, again at Ridgewood Field.