Holm's Homer Opens Wabash Ballpark
by Brent Harris
March 19, 2011
Junior John Holm opened the new Wabash Ballpark in style, getting the first hit in the new facility by parking a home run in the bottom of the first inning to boost the Little Giants to an 8-2 win in game one over Wilmington. The Little Giants used a four-run third inning in game two to produce a 6-4 victory.
View photos from the Ballpark's first two games here, here, here, and here.
Holm lifted an 0-2 pitch over the left field fence off the Quakers' Jared Ramsey to collect the first hit, RBI, and run scored at the College's new baseball park. The day was already special for Holm as he was celebrating his birthday.
"It's was a great feeling knowing the first hit was my home run," Holm said. "We've got a great park here. It was an 0-2 count and I was lucky I got a pitch down the middle. I was happy to just change my swing a little bit. Hopefully that snaps me out of the slump I was in prior to today's game."
"It was great for our players and for everyone in the stands," Head Coach Cory Stevens said. "The fans provided such a great atmosphere today. I can't believe how many community members came out to support us today. We had members from the Wabash community and from the local community here. It was just a great atmosphere all around."
Andrew Swart was dominating on the mound as the starter, going the distance while allowing three hits and two runs with one walk. Swart (right) struck out six batters.
After Wabash took the early 1-0 lead, the Quakers answered with two runs in the third. The Little Giants responded with a three-run fourth inning, starting the scoring on a bunt single by PJ Tyson with runners at first and third. A two-out outfield error by Wilmington plated two more runs in the inning, staking the Little Giants to a 4-2 lead.
Holm led off the fifth with a double, scoring on an RBI single by Tanner Coggins. Another error by the Quakers produced two more runs to put Wabash up 7-2. A sacrifice fly by Montana Timmons in the sixth inning brought the final run of the game home for the Little Giants.
Holm and Coggins each had two hits for the Little Giants in game one.
A four-run third inning proved to be the difference for Wabash in game two. Wilmington struck early against starter Brian Van Duyn, scoring twice in the first inning. Brian Lares led of the Wabash half of the first with double, scoring two batter later when Holm reached on an error by the Quakers shortstop.
The first two Little Giant batters were retired in third inning before the team would begin to mount a rally. Timmons and Chris Deig each singled just ahead of a bases-clearing triple by Coggins. A double by Tyson scored Timmons, and another double by David Seibel brought Coggins home. Timmons singled home an insurance run in the fourth inning.
The Quakers (3-5) scored two runs in the top of the seventh and had the bases loaded with one out, but Eric Foust came on to retire two of the three batters he faced, earning his first save of the season. Foust allowed one hit and struck out one. Van Duyn evened his season record at 1-1 by working 6-1/3 innings with six hits, four runs, two walks and seven strikeouts. Van Duyn threw 69 strikes on 99 total pitches.
Timmons, Tyson, and Seibel led Wabash offensively, each collecting two hits.
Wabash improves to 5-10 overall with the Saturday sweep. The Little Giants and WIlmington will meet again on Sunday afternoon for two more seven-inning contests beginning at noon at the Wabash Ballpark.
Game One - Wabash 8, Wilmington 2 (box score)
Game Two - Wabash 6, Wilmington 4 (box score)