Before the start of the third inning of Titusville's home game against New Bethlehem Wednesday, the ll-star infield of the gold clad 12 and under baseballers decided to practice their double play tosses. Like Tinkers, to Evers to Chance, the fabled hall of fame double play impresarios, Huck to Smith to Oviatt flawlessly moved the ball like lightning across the diamond.
“They just do that on their own,” said head coach Adam Huck.
This type of dedication to practice led to some pretty impressive, and important, plays in the field Wednesday in their third game of the double-elimination tournament. Though they never converted a double play on three attempts, they did manage to keep those baserunners out of scoring position while recording valuable outs and thwarting any glimmer of momentum.
And one diving stop by Miles Smith with a from his belly toss to Carter Huck at second for the force out drew gasps and applause from the crowd, including the New Bethlehem side.
“They love to play together,” coach Huck said of his son and Smith. “These kids are beginning to understand where they need to be in certain situations. That’s what you gotta do in all stars.”
It's been this level of play from the young team that has them in a position to take on a very good Butler team tonight. Huck said he only has two 12-year-olds on the team.
They lost a tight battle to Clarion 3-1 in the first game of the tournament on a soggy field in Rimersburg.“Clarion is always good, always well coached. I was pretty happy we went out there and played well,” coach Huck said.
They bounced back with a strong come from behind win against Knox 6-3. Coach Huck said that catcher Noah Smith was brilliant in that game with good at-bats and stellar work behind the plate. "I don't think he had a single passed ball the whole game."
This set up a home game against New Bethlehem where it was really no contest. Titusville's bats, aggressive base-running, speed and heads-up p[lay was just too much for their visitors.
Though New Bethlehem struck first in the top of the first, once Miles Smith drilled a rocket back off the pitcher, it was obvious who was going to prevail. His cousin Kellen Smith then sent a ball into the outfield for a double and the rabbit-like Miles flew around the bases from first to score and tie the game. On a throw home, Kellen Smith ended up on third.
Then, noting the New Bethlehem pitcher was not paying close attention as he walked back to the mound, Kellen stole home to take the lead they would never relinquish.
By the end of the inning they were up 3-1 after Bowen Wakefield decided to swing at a ball over his head and managed to put it into right field to score Huck for the RBI.
This was the kind of night they would have where everything seemed to work.
In the end they just poured it on. They scored three in the first, five in the second and another five in the third. New Bethlehem managed to score enough in the fifth to make Titusville bat, but it wasn’t long before they ended the contest 15-4.
Coach Huck complimented his three pitchers on the night. “It was a complete team effort on the mound tonight.”
Charlie Ackerman did the majority of the pitching, only giving up one run. Bowen Wakefield came in to relieve and Brennen Alberth finished the game. “Bowen had a really great game tonight, he put the bat on the ball a lot and came in to do what we needed him to do on the mound,” couch Huck said.
He also pointed out Oviatt’s play as a first time all-star. A key early hit drove in a couple runs and played a solid first base.
Huck’s son had a monster game - scoring twice and reaching base in each of his at-bats. He drove in the final two runs in the walk-off victory.
Titusville moves on to face Butler in the consolation quarter-finals tonight at home. Coach Huch said Butler and Franklin are probably the two best teams in the tournament and knows his team has their work cut out for them if they are going to stay alive.
Franklin takes on Cranberry tonight as well in the winners bracket semi-finals in Franklin. Oil City hosts southern Clarion County. All games are slated to start at 6 p.m.
Below are a few more photos from Wednesday game in Hydetown.
Veteran summer theater actress, Abby Preston is the, at first, precocious yet very human Maria in the Rodgers and Hammerstein adaptation of the Hoard Lindsay and Russel Crouse book about the Von Trapp family's escape from Nazi occupied Austria at the beginning of what would become World War II.
Her love interest counterpart is Kevin Vinson as the hard edged Baron Von Trapp who will soften as the performance goes on and he reacquaints with his children, who seem to be having real fun for the first time in their lives thanks to Maria.
The show, which had its first dress-rehearsal Monday, will be polished and ready for three shows this week beginning Thursday and running Friday and Saturday as well. All shows start at 7 p.m.
Colestock Auditoium is at Titusville High School.
If you don't get your musical fill, also opening this weekend with a Sunday performance and more chances to see it the following week,
More photos please visit: https://sayerrich.zenfolio.com/p740494099
Titusville chipped away. They got one in the first when Aaron Burrows reached first on an Oil City error and then made it around the bases scoring on a Knapp base hit . They scored again in the third after Brody Sellen singled and got into scoring position for Burrows to drive him home.
Oil City finally got across home plate in the fifth when Gavin Keith scored. Titusville answered in the bottom half of the inning when Sellen and Burrows both scored again going up 4-1.
Oil City made it interesting with a three run sixth-inning to tie.
Again Titusville answered when lead-off batter Kaden Currier walked and ended up eventually making around the bases. Brett Schmidt closed down Oil City in the top of the seventh with a couple strikeouts.
More photos please visit: https://sayerrich.zenfolio.com/p740494099
The crack of a wooden bat hitting a hurled leather baseball in the warm summer breeze is like no other. Even when that sound is more like "clnnnaapthhh."
That was the sound of Hunter Thomas's bat in the second inning of Monday's Titusville American Legion game against Corry with a runner in scoring position. The sound was unquestionable, Thomas broke his bat, but what it did to the action of the ball was enough for the shortstop to bobble it allowing Thomas, who carried his bat all the way to first, to reach base and for Cameron Mong to score.
It was the first run of the game, but not the last. It was the last time the bat would make an appearance, but what a way to go out.
Last week coach Buck Obert said, when the team was 1-2, that he needed to do a better job preparing his team if they were going to win.
It seems he did just that as his legion team has now recorded two straight wins.
They beat Fort LeBoeuf 5-3 over a week ago and their wooden bats were on fire Monday when they downed Corry 9-1. Against LeBoeuf, they reached base over a dozen times drawing five walks and being beaned a couple of times. Six hits then brought in five runs.
Against Corry, Austin Shoup pitched lights out through most of the first three and a third innings only giving up one run on a wild pitch. Caden Blakeslee and Cameron Mong finished off the rest in convincing fashion only giving up one hit in the last three innings.
Obert said the boys pitched really well Monday night.
The offense was a little slow getting started despite Kasen Neely’s knocking the fourth pitch he saw for a double. He ended ending up stranded on third.
In the second, Mong walked and eventually scored on Thomas' broken bat muff by the Corry shortstop.
In the third, Neeley reached on another bobbled ball by the shortstop. He was forced out at second on a Shoup grounder but Corry failed to turn the double play. Shoup ended up at third after a steal and advancing on a Jacob Teeter infield grounder. Mason Titus singled to score Shoup. Titus scored a couple batters later when Mong drove him in. Titusville was warmed up now.
In the fourth, Neeley doubled with two outs and scored on an error from a Teeter grounder to short. Corry's shortstop was having a bad day and Titusville seemed to capitalize on that fact.
Titusville scored again in the fifth when Hank Lockhart crossed home plate on a Brett Schmidt single.
Titusville erupted for four insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth. They weren’t needed as Mong came in and struck out two and gave up a grounder to second that was easily converted to an out.
Obert is looking for ways his team can improve and things to go over in practice said. “We hit the ball good at the end of the game, but we need to get better starts if we want to keep winning."
Preston has been in many shows through the years, while for some others it'll be a first.
Monday, some members of the cast performed their songs in front of the live audience at the Scheide Park during their weekly concert series.
Kevin Vinson, who will play Baron Von Trapp, said part of his role in the musical is to show he can't sing which he said is easy, but another part of the show he has to show he can sing, which he admitted was much more difficult.
Since the end of April the cast and producers have rehearsed wherever they could, most the middle school, but have been transforming the Colestock Auditorium stage for a few weeks now.
A lot of singing and choreography will culminate on Monday for the first night of dress rehearsal.
Just four nights later, they open their three-day run at 7 p.m. at Titusville High School's Colestock Auditorium.
It will also run Friday and Saturday also starting at 7 p.m.
The show directors and producers are: Stephanie Cicero-Stage Director, Jerry Knickerbocker-Music Director, Aime Sposato-Music Director, Mariah McDaniel-Choreographer and Gloria Taylor and Kathy Adelman are producers
Cast members are: Abby Preston, Marissa Gale, Debbie Adamchick, Abigail Vinson, Chris Sonnenberg, Kate Kovach, Jamie Fortney, Kathy Adelman, Stephanie Fullerton, Megin Scwak, Amy Bernard, Julia Brown, Samantha Shepherd, Lizzy Smedley, Maeve Wakefield, Suelahny Gaspard, Flynn Kirvan, Charlotte Winger, Olivia Decker, Elaena Baldwin, Delaney Smith, Laurel McKellop, Katelyn Bernard,
Kevin Vinson, Jeremy James, Chloe Preston, Ella Lavery, Ty Witosky, Olivia Clinton, Willa Kirvan, Ella Bernard,Tyler Brown, Patricia McKellop, Shannon Vinson, James McGinnis, Chris Warner, CJ Kirvan, Dale Smith, Jeremiah Shepherd, Debbie Kirvan, Ayden Fullerton and Luke Keebler.
Titusville Council on the Arts: Music Festival kicks off this Friday, June 23, and Saturday, June 24, for a weekend full of music.
Featured musicians include:
Samantha Sears Music
Ruby - Mountain Soul Music
Ethan Foulk Music
Chris Higbee Band
The Mercantile, Fat Chad’s Tap & Steakhouse, Fat Chad’s Brewing, The Titusville Mill, and Titusville Iron Works are partnering with the arts council for this event.
For more details, follow the event page at: https://fb.me/e/10FlwW2cd.
Chad Covell said he has been friends with former Pittsburgh Steeler's Louis Lipps and RJ Bowers for years. He has asked them to come by his restaurant in Titusville this Sunday, June 25 from noon to 2 p.m. to meet up with area athletes and maybe sign some autographs.
Covell said he'd love to see kids from all the local school take advantage of meeting pro ball players. "The more local teams that can come... it's a great bonding time to help teams come together." Covell said.
The event at Fat Chads in downtown Titusville is free and open to the public.
Louis Lipps played for the Steelers in a 108 games over eight years from 1984 to 1991 where he caught 358 passes and scored 46 touchdowns (four of them running, three on punt returns). He also threw a touchdown pass. He was also the NFL Rookie of the year in 1981 with over 800 receiving yards and over 600 kick return yards. He is a two-time Pro-Bowler.
RJ Bowers at one time held the record for most rushing yards in a career with 7, 353 while playing at Grove City College. The West Middlesex grad also rushed for 93 touchdowns, 32 in his senior year. As an NFL player he was under utilized by the Steelers where he only ran the ball a dozen and a half times for 84 yards and one touchdown. in two seasons with the Browns he touched the ball only once but for a receiving touchdown.
Obert understands, but it does make it tough to put a team together. He also said that other sports, that at one time were more seasonal, are year round now. “Football has started already, we have three or four kids who are into football and it's their thing and it’s great, but it’s tough (to field a full team now.)
Obert isn’t lamenting. The team he has shows up and works hard.
Eight & 27 focuses on stories centered around Titusville, PA. With the sad end of The Titusville Herald, we're hoping to pick up the slack.