I brake for Al Maunz
by Than Acuff
“Bowel shaking earthquakes of doubt and remorse” nearly rendered KBUT feeble as they stumbled through the majority of the game against the Eleven Tuesday evening, June 12 at Gothic field. But then the Harringtons showed up, KBUT started finding their game and things got real interesting.
It was a rather benign start for KBUT and a solid opening to the game for the Eleven as they combined base hits, walks and aggressive base running to build an 9-0 lead over the first two and a half innings.
They opened the game with back-to-back walks and then scored two runs on base hits from Josh Schumacher and Kyra Martin. Lindsay Beltchenko then cracked a base hit to right and Martin wheeled home to score for a quick 3-0 lead.
Speaking of wheeling around…
Several years ago I saw my favorite bumper sticker. It read “Maine Bumpah Stickah.”
Then came “I brake for Almont.”
Now, “I brake for Al Maunz” tops the list.
Who hasn’t stepped on the brakes for Al Maunz as he is deep in a hole making sense of the connection between the outdated town pipes and the recently updated homeowner pipes. Hotsy! Or, when he’s bouncing around town in his backhoe with Danny Albin holding on tight on the outside. Or, when he’s wheeling his big rig around the corner of Sixth and Belleview.
Speaking of wheels, Neil Beltchenko, a local man known more for his ability to ride a bike through snow, wind and sand for hundreds of miles on no sleep, can also play some ball and drove a RBI single in the top of the second inning for the Eleven. Ryan Kay soon followed with a three RBI triple off the netting in left field and Martin pushed home another run with another base hit for an 8-0 lead. And it could have been more but KBUT third basewoman flagged down a hot grounder and fired to second base for the third out.
The Eleven tacked on one more run when Phil Dujardin, that’s right there’s another Dujardin, stretched for a triple and scored on a base hit by Grant Vanhoosen and KBUT was handed a blow when somewhere in there Ed Dujardin pulled a hamstring and Will Dujardin was called in to replace him.
Much like KBUT the radio station (if you don’t like the program wait a couple of hours) KBUT the softball team finally showed some signs of life after a couple of innings. Collin Vossen sparked a brief but potent rally as he led off with a solo home run. Will Dujardin doubled and scored on a single from Sohrab Nimrouzi, Sonny Burgess scored two more with a double and Jay McCarthy capped the rally with a RBI single.
More base hits, a two RBI walk and a two RBI single by Molly Keating put the Eleven back on top by eight runs but Vossen struck again leading off with a solo shot and Casey Hess tapped a RBI single to keep KBUT moving forward as the Dujardin family took another hit when Phil had to leave with a pulled hamstring (Dujarret).
KBUT refused to fold though and they remained in the hunt with a couple runs in the bottom of the sixth. Still before they could really make a run at things, the Eleven rattled off four more runs of their own for a 17-9 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh.
Then things got interesting. Shawn Harrington led off for KBUT with a single. Hess singled and Harrington charged through the bases to score. Two more base hits and an error loaded the bases for KBUT and Will Dujardin pushed three home with a triple cutting the Eleven’s lead down to three. A sac fly RBI by Lindeman, a single from John Hopper and a bad bounce single from Katie Harper had two on with Harrington returning to the plate. Harrington stroked a two RBI double to pull KBUT to within one but the Eleven defense finally found the third out to hold off KBUT and hang on for the 17-16 win.