Action Packed Weekend is a Split
Posted July 17, 2017
All visitors to Fritz Field this weekend were treated to some fun baseball. The Hollanders played host to the Spring Hill Chargers, who by the looks of it were able to fit the entire city's population on their bus. The sweltering July sun didn't bother the atmosphere during the friendly exhibition game as the Chargers and Hollanders played a back and forth game. Zack Nelson started the game on the mound and threw three innings before the shotgun rotation came in as Gavin Celichowski pitched two innings and Kyle Twait, Rob Mobeck, Carter Clemensen, and Tanner Luebke all gave one inning each on the bump. Spring Hill jumped out of the gate and scored one in the top of the first, but Cologne answered right back as Twait scored off of a Kyle Brazil double. Cologne then got the lead in the second as Jordan Litschewski started the inning by taking first after getting hit, Brandon Fritz singled to right that swung Jordan around to third, and Twait was able to bring in the run as he also singled to right. The Chargers were able to get back to even in the fourth after some perfect small ball: a single to start, a walk, a sacrifice bunt, and a sacrifice fly to plate the run. The bottom half of the fourth saw a two out mini-rally as Twait, Carter, and Brazil strung together three singles in a row to take the lead. Cologne then added another run the sixth as Gavin scored off of another Brazil double. The Chargers then pulled within one again in the top half of the seventh and the bats caught fire in the eighth as they managed to score five for a four run lead. In the bottom half of the ninth the Hollanders still made it interesting as Isaac Good started the inning by reaching first on a HBP and Jon Kummer launched his second homerun over the left field fence for the two run tater. That's all the Hollanders could muster as the score remained Chargers 8 Hollanders 6. The Cologne Hollanders want to thank all the Spring Hill players and fans for making the trek down for Fill the Hill. Don't get too comfortable with that traveling trophy as the Hollanders will be back next year to claim it!
Satruday's excitement rolled right into Sunday's marathon game against Carver. Earlier in the year the Black Sox bested Cologne in a 2-1 duel. As the Hollanders were looking for payback against Carver the first two innings added some interference. Alex Meeker was given the pearl to start the game on the mound. Carver was able to score two in the first and three in the second off of Meeker, but the Hollander lefty bulldogged through the next four innings and only allowed one more hit (his last three innings were perfect nine up-nine down). The Hollanders were able to score a run with two outs in the bottom of the first as Carter, Brazil and Anthony Brenner strung together three hits. The Black Sox were able to thwart a potential Hollander rally in the sixth when Tim Swanson hit into a double playafter Brazil and Brenner led off the inning by each getting hit with a pitch. The inning was ended after Kummer lined out to the first baseman. Zack Nelson then took over on the mound and built on the wall that Meeker started four innings prior. The Black Sox had six hits in the first three innings, but after that Meeker and Nelson wouldn't allow another Carver hit until the 16th inning. For those who might need some help, that's twelve innings of no-hit baseball for the pair! The big Hollander rally came during the eighth. Brazil drew a lead of walk then Brenner blasted his first homerun of the season for the two-run dinger. The rally started again as Tim Swanson followed with a double. Then with two outs Joey Lilya singled. Swanson and Lilya each moved up a base after a wild pitch. With the count at two balls and two strikes Kyle Twait nutted a double to the left-center gap to score the two ducks and tie the game at four runs a piece. The ninth inning started a real pitcher's duel (that's kind of weird to say) between Nelson and Carver's Mark Ulrich. Over the next eight innings the two pitchers were dialed in and neither showed signs of letting up. That all changed in the bottom of the 17th as Brazil, after getting down a quick 0-2, lined a single up the middle. After failing to get Brazil to second on the sacrifice Tim Swason showed that even a man on first is still in scoring position. Swanson took the first pitch and shot a rope to right-center field. Brazil, reading that the liner wouldn't be caught, took off and scored easily to break the stalemate and get Cologne the win. The game was one for the books as the 17 inning battle was played over 4.5 hours.
The Hollanders look to keep building momentum during the last week of regular season play as they will travel to Hamburg Tuesday night (7:30pm), travel to Young America Thursday night (7:30pm), and finish up hosting Brownton Sunday afternoon (2pm). The boys are starting to hit their stride now and playing some good baseball. Come support the club as they push through the rest of the season and begin playoffs.