Tongue-N-Groovers lick Airheads 16-7

On a three-game roll

The new Tommy V Field is massive when it comes to softball. There are gaps galore in both the infield and the outfield as teams try to figure out how to position on defense.
Last week the Airheads riddled the gaps to score 27 runs in a win over the Gas Holes. Monday night, they were served up a spoonful of their own medicine as the Tongue-N-Groovers (T-N-G) sprayed base hits from base line to base line, near and far to score 16 runs for the nine-run win over the Airheads.
T-N-G came in Monday night one game behind the Airheads in the standings with both teams on winning streaks.
Their pitcher Dav-O Moore made sure the team was focused on the task at hand prior to the game, laying out his strategy for success with his weekly rally call, “Drink beer, have fun.”
They came out swinging in the top of the first inning as Adam Ofsterdahl and Rebecca Weil, arguably the best coed lead off combination in the league, each connected for singles. Mike Lauerman popped a single to shallow right to score Ofsterdahl and put two runners on with no outs.
Airheads third baseman and monster on the snowboard Bruce Winchenbach scooped up a grounder down the line to step on third and fire to second for a 5-4 double-play, stopping the T-N-G offense in their tracks, and a strikeout ended the opening offensive flurry from the T-N-G.
The Airheads picked up where they left off a week ago in their first at-bat Monday night, putting runners on base with base hits to the gaps. Lynelle Stanford drove the first Airheads run in with a sacrifice fly RBI and Rob Houston stroked an opposite field two-run inside-the-park home run (ITPHR) to give the Airheads a 3-1 lead.
Joe Erickson, who along with Lauerman honed his swings and slapshots on the plains of North Dakota, stepped to the plate in the top of the second and smacked the ball a North Dakota mile deep in right field for a solo ITPHR.
The Airheads defense tightened up to turn the next three outs with Winchenbach and second-base-woman Dalynn Trujillo doing most of the work.
Both defenses stepped up the next two innings trading off highlights.
Pete Basile chased down a deep shot to center by Cole Stanford to rob him of a hit with a leaping grab.
Airhead pitcher Jacob Parr was nearly castrated on the mound by a line drive from Lauerman but recovered in time to make the throw to first and T-N-G outfielder Dana Olson reeled in a line drive by Lauren Alkire to rob her of an extra base hit.
The T-N-G bats broke the defensive standoff in the top of the fifth to score four runs as Weil slapped a RBI line drive down the third base line and brother Mikey Weil blooped a two-RBI single to shallow centerfield. Geordie VanMarter tapped a RBI single up the middle to give the T-N-G a 6-3 lead.
Cole Stanford punched a RBI double in the bottom of the fifth for one Airheads run but Adrienne Edmunds pulled off a leg-splitting stretch at first base to catch an errant toss for the out and end it for the Airheads offense.
The bottom of the T-N-G batting order led a nine-run rally in the top of the sixth inning. Erickson and Joan Stevens opened with back-to-back singles, Chris Eaton drove a run in with a base hit and Moore, the consummate softball tactician, took a walk instead of swinging at junk to push two more runs across.
Rebecca Weil popped her third hit of the night to put the T-N-G up 11-4 and a defensive miscue by the Airheads gave up two more runs.
Olson and Erickson capped the crushing with two more RBI base hits putting the T-N-G on top 15-4.
The play of the game, and possibly the season, came from Mikey Weil in the bottom of the sixth inning, charging from his shortstop position to chase down a pop fly down the third base line with a diving back-handed grab (cue the Sports Center theme music).
Eaton gave the T-N-G a 12-run lead in the top of the seventh with his own ITPHR before the Airheads closed, scoring two last runs.
Lynelle Stanford cracked an opposite field RBI triple and scored and Brian Murphy added his two cents to the ITPHR showdown by the big hitters. Down 10 runs with two outs and no one on, Murphy made his best attempt at going barnyard—that’s going yard over the left field fence and hitting the barn—but came up short and was forced to run for his home run, i.e. Broadway the hard way, for his own ITPHR, but the game was more than done and the T-N-G defense closed it out for the 16-7 win.

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