Holt vs. Mason – – Baseball – – First Round – – Diamond Classic – – The Bleacher Denizen – – May 23, 2022 – – by Chuck Krafft

Tonight, is the opening night of the 60th Annual Diamond Classic! Your Bleacher Denizen was able to come to the beautiful diamond at Michigan State’s McLane (Baseball) Stadium! While the teams are warming up, maybe we can loosen up a bit with this Ragtime tune from my “Chuck Krafft” You Tube Channel!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUieaBvS38w

In tonight’s game, the Holt Rams will compete with the Mason Bulldogs to see who will advance to Thursday’s Quarterfinal Game!

Here are the starting lineups. Mason is the home team.. Holt will bat first.

HOLT:

Evan Mendoza rf

Logan VanEnkevort p

Matthew Barger ss

Logan Wilder 1b

Owen Webster lf

Eddie McDonald 3b

Trevor Yemc rf

Connor Seagren c

Alec Stout 2b

MASON:

Ty Bercaw cf

Jake Marble ss

Talon Rowe 1b

Matthew McGonigal c

Cody Paul dh

Ty Hall rf

Ethan Lockwood lf

Dustin Budzynski 3b

Hunter Brackenwagen 2b

Colin Koot will pitch, but will not bat.

It is time to look through the events of this game through the eyes of an aging Bleacher Denizen who delighted many catchers and umpires with flailing, but unsuccessful swings at baseballs!

Bulldog Pitcher Colin Koot retired the the three Ram first inning hitters on a fly to left field, a grounder to the shortstop and a liner to center field.

Ayden VanEnkevort struck out the Mason leadoff batter in the top of the first inning. Jake Marble lined a single to right field. Ayden VanEnkevort picked the runner off first base to record the second out. The next batter was out on a popup to third base to end the inning.

Colin Koot retired the first two Ram batters in the second inning on a fly to centerfield and a grounder to the shortstop. Mason left fielder Ethan Lockwood made a great diving catch to record the third out.

Holt Pitcher Ayden VanEnkevort retired the three Mason hitters in the bottom of the second inning on a strikeout, a fly to center field and another strikeout.

Mason’s third inning leadoff batter was out on a ground ball to the shortstop. Connor Seagren lined a single to centerfield. Connor Seagren advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Alec Stout. Colin Koot retired the next hitter on a bouncer to the mound to end the inning.

Ayden VanEnkevort retired the three Bulldog hitters in the bottom of the third inning on a fly to right field and two strikeouts.

Ayden VanEnkevort lined a single to centerfield to lead off the top of the fourth inning for Holt. He advanced to second base on a single by Matthew Barger. Ayden Van Enkevort went to third base and Matthew Barger to second on a double steal. The next hitter was out on a fy to the shortstop. Owen Webster beat out an infield single to drive in Ayden VanEnkevort. Matthew Barger took third base on the play. The next batter was out on a fly to centerfield as the runners held. Owen Webster stole second base. Colin Koot got the next hitter to ground out to the shortstop to end the inning.

Holt scored one run in the top of the fourth inning to take a 1-0 lead.

Ty Bercaw opened the bottom of the fourth inning for Mason with a lined single to centerfield. Jake Marble’s sacrifice bunt moved Ty Bercaw to second base. Talon Rowe lined a single to centerfield to drive in Ty Bercaw to tie the game. Talon Rowe took second base on a passed ball. Ayden VanEnkevort picked the runner off second base for the second out. Mason made its third out on a fly to center field.

Colin Koot retired the first two Holt batters in the top of the fifth inning on a strikeout and a fly to left field. Evan Mendoza singled over the shortstop and stole second base. Colin Koot got the final out of the inning on a fly to left field.

Cody Paul walked to lead off the bottom of the fifth inning for Mason. Cody Paul advanced to second base on a bunt single by Ty Hall. Cody Paul went to third and Ty Hall to second on a sacrifice bunt by Ethan Lockwood. Ayden VanEnkevort struck out the next batter. Hunter Brackenwagen drove a single to centerfield to drive in Cody Paul and Ty Hall. Ayden VanEnkevort struck out the next Bulldog hitter to end the game.

Mason scored two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to take a 3-1 lead.

Matthew Barger grounded a single to centerfield to open the top of the sixth inning for Holt. Matthew Barger took second base on a single to center by Logan Wilder. Owen Webster singled to left field to load the bases with a small herd of Rams. Colin Koot retired the next batter on a popup to first base. Matthew Barger came home on Trevor Yemc’s groundout to second base. Holt made its third out on a grounder to third base.

Holt scored one run in the top of the sixth inning to trim the Mason lead to 3-2.

Jake Marble walked to lead off the bottom of the sixth inning for Mason. Jake Marble advanced to second base when Talon Rowe was hit by a pitch. Matthew McGonigal walked to load the bases. Joey Fraga entered the game as a courtesy runner for Matthew McGonigal. Ayden VanEnkevort retired the next batter on a fly to short centerfield as the runners held. Ayden VanEnkevort struck out the next hitter and got the third out on a fly to second base.

Kudos to Ayden VanEnkevort for escaping a bases loaded, no out situation without giving up a run. Holt entered the top of the seventh inning trailing 3-2.

Mason Third Baseman Dustin Budzynski snared a hot liner off the bat of Alec Stout to record the third out of the top of the seventh inning. Evan Mendoza was hit by a pitch. The next Ram hitter was out on a popup to second base. Evan Mendoza stole second base and went to third base on a passed ball. Matthew Barger walked.

Dustin Budzynski came in to pitch for Mason and Colin Koot took over at third base. Dustin Budzynski got the next out on a grounder to second base to end the game.

Mason won 3-2 and will advance to Thursday’s Quarterfinal game against Okemos.

Owen Webster had two singles and an RBI for Holt. Matthew Barger had two singles. Evan Mendoza, Logan VanEnkevort, Logan Wilder and Connor Seagren each had a single. Logan VanEnkevort pitched the complete game for the Rams.

Hunter Brackenwagen had a single and two RBI for Mason. Talon Rowe had a single and one RBI. Ty Bercaw, Jake Marble and Ty Hall each had a single.

Colin Koot pitched 6 2/3 innings for Mason and only gave up two runs.

Here is a link to the other first round game played tonight!

https://thebleacherdenizen.com/2022/05/24/pewamo-westphalia-baseball-first-round-diamond-classic-the-bleacher-denizen-may-23-2022-by-chuck-krafft/

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