Weil family fun
by Than Acuff
Just so we’re perfectly clear, again the Avalanche did not “officially” win anything last season. Yet, to their credit, they believe they did and continue carrying their trophy to each game throughout the season this year.
Say it enough times, though and it eventually becomes the truth. I think what’s best about their ritual is each player gets to spend some time with the trophy, much like Lord Stanley’s Cup.
Plus, there’s a good chance that 10 years from now when I am still covering softball and the Avalanche is still playing I will recall, incorrectly, that the Avalanche were the 2016 rec league champions, at which point it will “officially” become true.
Thursday night, the Avalanche brought their trophy to Pitsker Field for their game against the Winehouse Monkeys. But that wasn’t all they brought. Mike Montano was grillin’ up some serious food (the best way to good press is through the writer’s stomach), and the Weil family, all 167 of them, were in attendance to cheer, and at times heckle, their kin on the Avalanche team.
Ultimately, the fans, the trophy, the grill and their play led to a tight one-run win over the Winehouse Monkeys.
The Avalanche opened the game on fire at the plate, lighting up the Monkeys for nine runs in the top of the first inning. Sam Reaman led off with a solo inside the park home run (ITPHR), Adrienne Weil singled and then scored on a triple from Michael Blunck.
Speaking of Blunck, I’ll put in a plug for his new company, Michael Blunck’s Dragon Academy of Discipline (DAD). Children running wild with no parental oversight? Miscreants making mayhem? Snatch them up and send them to DAD.
“At DAD we follow an acronym-based philosophy. PUNISH:”
U stupid or something?
Never talk back
I’m gonna make you wish you were never born.
Stop being a punk ass kid.
Help! Is what you’ll scream when I get ahold of you!
Back to the game…
Jodine Pahl, aka Barnes’ neighbor, slapped a RBI single, Slater “Phil” Weil pulled a two-RBI single down the third base line, Perdie Linehan blooped a RBI single and Sam Reaman returned to the plate for a two-RBI single and a 9-0 Avalanche lead.
But, just one week earlier Psycho Rocks had done the same thing opening with a big first inning only to sputter through the rest of the game before closing with a win and the Avalanche nearly did the same thing.
The Monkeys started to chip away at the Avalanche lead almost immediately, scoring three runs in the bottom of the first inning. Pete Basile led off with a double and scored on a big hustle single from Bart Consedine, PJ Zolpin cracked a RBI double and Tony Wildman tomahawked a RBI single to right.
Impatience at the plate, and Wildman’s masterful pitching, handcuffed the Avalanche hitters in the top of the second and the Winehouse Monkeys carried on with their bats in the bottom of the second inning to pull even closer.
Basile and Pahl each benefited from some fielding miscues to get on base and score and Zolpin stretched a routine base hit into a two-RBI triple to pull within two of the Avalanche.
With the Monkeys a little too close for comfort, both Slater and his father, Mikey Weil, teamed up to help rebuild the Avalanche lead. Slater and Pahl each stroked base hits and Mikey drove them home with a triple. Paula Dietrich put the bat to the ball for a bloop-RBI single and the Avalanche were ahead 12-7.
The Monkeys soon disrupted a brief lull in the action with Consedine stretching for a double and Kate Schmidt punching an RBI double. Zolpin took advantage of further fielding miscues by the Avalanche to reach second and then scored when Terann Wight pushed a two-RBI single to right, closing the Avalanche lead back down to two runs.
Two runs proved too close again though, and Pahl, Slater and Mikey sparked another brief Avalanche rally. With Pahl and Slater on base, Mikey knocked them both in again with a double up the middle. Mikey then scored on a base hit from Dina Ferrante and Adrienne Weil had the Avalanche out ahead 16-10 when she closed the rally with a RBI single.
The broken record kept on spinning though, as the Monkeys just would not go away, scoring four runs in the bottom of fifth with Schmidt and Zolpin doing most of the damage.
The Monkey defense tried to clamp down on the Avalanche in the top of the sixth inning and did so for the most part. Ralph Lundi doubled to deep left and scored on a double from Billy Watson and that was that for the Avalanche. Fortunately for the Avalanche, that was all they needed.
Basile and Schmidt each pushed a Monkey home with base hits and the Monkeys were about to finally pull of the win with two on with two outs and down by just one run in the bottom of the seventh and momentum in their favor. But Avalanche catcher Maggie Chlipala pulled in a foul tip off the Monkey hitter for the third and final out to save the 17-16 Avalanche win.