14-run inning lifts PHS baseball to win
“I don’t ever remember an inning like this,” said Parkland coach Kurt Weber about his team’s 14-run fifth inning in a 17-0 win over Emmaus. In that fifth inning, Parkland sent 20 batters to the plate and the first 13 all reached base safely.
The Trojans pounded out 13 hits, drew three walks, took advantage of an Emmaus error, had eight different players drive in runs and finished the inning with the bases loaded. They also went through three different Emmaus pitchers.
The fifth inning started with Parkland holding a 3-1 lead over the Hornets. The teams traded early home runs, with Wyatt Henseler taking one out to center field and Christian Kinsley getting a little help from a brisk wind to drive one out to right-center field.
“Maybe a good 100 or 150 feet; I’m OK with that,” said Kinsley about the wind-aided home run that led off the third inning and put Parkland up 2-1. “I had to do a double take. If I’m being 100-percent honest, that’s not really my game. I just try to get on base and let the guys behind me drive me in.”
Two of the first three runs were driven in by Adam Mellinger, who singled to drive home Cullan Wadsworth in the first and then hit a fly ball to short right field in the third that allowed Wadsworth to score from third after the catch.
Trojan pitcher Adam Smith was the recipient of the big offensive display. Smith gave up a long home run to Henseler in the first, but wasn’t fazed by it and looked to settle in. Emmaus put runners in scoring position in each of the first three innings, but Smith was able to shut down the Hornets and strand six runners through the first four innings.
“I made a mistake in the first inning, but I knew our defense would hold them down and I just concentrated on making pitches,” said Smith. “My mindset is to keep runners off base and let our defense do their job and then we just battle at the plate.”
Koby Staivecki pitched the final inning for Parkland.
The Trojans had won their first two games by scoring a combined five runs, so the offensive output was definitely unexpected. On Monday, the Trojans’ bats continued to pound away and scored six runs in a 6-3 win over Northampton.
In beating the Konkrete Kids, Wadsworth drove in two runs and Joe Webber went 2-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI. A.J. Palumbo threw five shutout innings and Collin Duff allowed one earned run over the final two innings.
“I know a lot of people have said that Parkland isn’t the best hitting team and we’re all about pitching and defense,” said Kinsley. “I’m definitely hoping it kick-starts us. I’m not expecting us to score 17 times every game, but at the same time, I want our guys to go up, put a good swing on the ball and see what happens. Sometimes, you just have to put the ball in play and make them make the defense make plays.”
The win over an Emmaus team that had rolled easily to a 4-0 record coming into the game against Parkland also sends a bit of a message to teams who might have thought the Trojans weren’t going to be a force this season.
Parkland travels to Bethlehem Thursday to play an unbeaten Liberty team before playing North Penn at home on Saturday. Over the next week, Parkland also hosts Allen and Central Catholic in EPC games.