Basking in beautiful sunshine, surrounded by a record-number of friends and family and with nearly the full team in the dugout, Know Mercy blasted through the first two rounds of the playoffs.
Nick Rodammer smashed a triple Schnitz in the team’s first at-bat against CTL-ALT-DEL, and the team never looked back, completing two games that featured clutch hitting, tight defense, stellar pitching and contributions from everyone.
Nick’s triple opened the door for a 6-run first inning, and the team added three more in the fourth and one in the fifth, leading to a 10-1 lead in the seventh. C-A-D had a short, two-out rally to score a couple dignity runs, but the outcome was never in doubt.
And the team started strong again in the next game against rival St. Matthews Monsters, pushing across five quick runs.
The Monsters bounced right back, answering with five of their own.
That’s where the tight defense and pitching kicked in, shutting down a potent Monster offense while Know Mercy methodically tacked on runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings.
The team took an 8-5 lead into the bottom of the seventh, and remember that these two squads already played to an 8-8 tie earlier in the season.
Monsters did their best to repeat that scenario. Leading off the sixth inning, one of the team’s big guns smacked one into the gap and was not content with a double or even a triple. Seeing Mike Gillis backing up third base, he made a break for the plate only to find Aaron Dunham waiting for Mel Carick relay throw that was right in target.
The Monsters then showed more life by pushing across two tense runs in the frame before Know Mercy could finally close the door, advancing to the semi-finals, likely against a formidable GE.
Jamie Norris is the team’s hottest player, going four-for-four with two big rbi against the Monsters.
Niki Ferguson is en fuego tambien, with two clutch walks and two hits and two runs scored.
Steve Cairns flashed some impressive leather. Playing deep in right-center for one of the main Monsters, Steve raced in to snag a shot that was falling short, grabbing it belt-high and preventing runs from scoring. He was no slouch at the plate, either, again using that blazing speed to score a big run.
Chad Zollman made some amazing plays at short, working with Casey Munger, Hannah Ulerich and Niki to turn several double plays and key force-outs. He also smashed a Triple Schnitz and two Schnitzes, scoring three times.
Steve Korb was four-for-four on the day with the big Double Schnitz that drove home what proved to be the deciding run against the Monsters.
Jason Stevenson was supposed to be in Dearborn, but instead escaped to Ada and contributed three hits.
Amy Bonjour reached base twice and scored against C-T-L.
Aside for extending the record for most games played by non-twin siblings, Ulerich sisters Hannah and Halle were perfect at the plate in the opener, even scoring three times.
Aaron went three-for-four with two runs scored and hit the longest foul ever. Sidekick Casey had two hits and scored two runs.
Any time someone named Melissa stepped to plate, it was bad news for a Know Mercy opponent. Both Melissa Ferens and Mel Carick reached base four times!
Mike Gillis kept dangerous Monster batters off balance with is mound magic, and was able to stay fresh when the Chipper Skipper would fill in for a couple innings to stare down C-A-D batters after their confidence was already shattered.
Schnitz Ada Grill Game Ball Game 1: Jamie Norris for extending his already amazing streak to sick levels!
Schnitz Ada Grill Game Ball Game 2: Steve Cairns for his outstanding catch, big hits and bold baserunning to put the Monsters away.