Friday, November 16, 2018
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Eldo takes down Elevate with aplomb

I just used aplomb in a headline

by Than Acuff

There is a transgender candidate by the name of Misty Snow running for U.S. Senate in the state of Utah against an incumbent Republican. I don’t know much about politics but I do know a little about Utah, arguably one of the more conservative states in the nation, and my guess is that Misty doesn’t have a Snowball’s chance in hell of winning that race but… BUT, Misty is going for it and I applaud that energy.

Much in the same way I applauded the energy of local softball team Elevate as they faced the Eldo at Gothic Field on Thursday, June 30—not that Elevate is a transgender team.

Elevate is entering its second year of existence and I have to think that expectations for the team were somewhat high as they headed into the 2016 season. Last year they wallowed at the bottom of the standings throughout the entire regular season, winning just one game all year, only to rise like a wounded phoenix and rattle off a number of wins in the post-season, coming within one game of reaching the championship. It was oh-so-close to being a classic Cinderella story.

Well, it appears they are back at it again this season as they had just one win heading into their game against the Eldo. On the bright side, they are averaging far more runs per game than their five runs per game average last year so I was looking for a classic Elevate upset. Furthermore, the Eldo was coming off a 13-10 loss in the battle of the undefeated against Pita’s OG, and there was a slight possibility that they would come into the game damaged goods and ripe for a second loss.

But they’re the Eldo and they’re mentally stronger than that—hell, they’re the defending champions—and whatever damage that may have been inflicted in their loss to Pita’s OG was nowhere to be found as they rolled to a 16-8 win over Elevate.

Jeff Banford opened the scoring for the Eldo in the top of the first inning, driving in two runs with a triple to shallow center field. The Eldo held Elevate scoreless in the bottom of the first, punctuated by third basewoman Carly Webb who dropped to her knees to backhand a groundball down the third base line and then threw an absolute “friggin’ laser” from her knees to first base for the out.

The Eldo added four more runs in the top of the second as Ryan Huning drove in a run with a triple, Vince Scola scored two on a double down the left field line and Webb, not just a great fielder but an exceptional hitter as well, cracked a RBI triple.

Will Browne and Huning connected for a couple of additional base hits to score three more Eldo runs, and it looked like we had the makings of a classic slow pitch blowout as the Eldo was sitting on a 8-0 lead midway through the third with little signs of life from the Elevate bats.

But that’s how they roll, that’s Elevate’s jam. Just when it appears they are headed into a massive train wreck, they swerve just in time, and Elevate swerved in the bottom of the fourth, knocking in four runs to give the fans a game.

Jessica Boman opened it up with a lead off single, Grant Spear followed with another single and Emily Fogleman knocked Elevate’s first run on a single to center. C “J Edgar” Hoover connected for a two-RBI triple and Laura Hewmann followed with a sac-RBI and Elevate was elevating and we had ourselves a game.

The Eldo stalled in their next at-bat and Elevate tacked on one more run to pull within three when Rebecca Pavlick singled and scored on a base hit from Bowman.

Feeling just a little bit of heat from Elevate, the Eldo turned its game back on high over the next two innings. Banford and Sohrob Nimrouzi each pushed Eldo runs home with base hits in the top of the fifth inning and the Eldo tacked on five more in the top of the sixth.

Kelli Jones kicked off the five-run rally with a RBI triple. Joey Reed dropped a RBI double in shallow center and then Webb further proved herself as one of the top players, man or woman, in the league when she tagged a two-run inside the park home run. Banford returned to the plate for a RBI single and the Eldo rebuilt a sizeable 15-6 lead.

The game took a brief pause before the seventh inning as umpire Tony Wildman took a call and Elevate managed to knock two more runs in on hits from Hoover and Hewmann, but enough was enough and Jess Ladwig closed out Elevate’s comeback bid with a leaping grab in right center for the 16-8 Eldo win.

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