Sports

Menzel mashers make mincemeat of Bulldogs

Angel Tilton belts out one of her three hits on the night.  Her production at the plate helped lead Menzel Lake to a convincing victory. -
Angel Tilton belts out one of her three hits on the night. Her production at the plate helped lead Menzel Lake to a convincing victory.
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ARLINGTON What started promisingly for the Bulldogs co-ed softball group quickly deteriorated into a Menzel Lake rout.
The Aug. 8 matchup brought together some of the best hitters in the recreational softball league to battle it out against each other. After the Bulldogs jumped out to an early lead, Menzel blasted their way back to a 14-4 victory.
Menzel Lake got particularly impressive performances from Angel Tilton and Darren Edwards. Tilton finished 3-3 with three runs scored and Edwards went 3-3 with two doubles, a home run, and four RBI.
The Bulldogs got on the scoreboard in the top half of the first inning. Leonard Turner led off the game with a clean double. Turner scored on a double from Scott Benham. Sami Mata recorded an RBI groundout thanks to a hustling Benham. On the play, Mata bounced a ball back to the pitcher who casually threw over to first base for the out. Benham rounded third and sped down the baseline in hopes of scoring ahead of the relay throw. He slid in barely ahead of the Menzel Lake tag, giving the Bulldogs a 2-0 edge. ##M:{more]##
The lead would be short-lived as Menzel bounced back in the bottom half of the inning. Angel Tilton singled to get things started and Ken Klein moved her over by drawing a walk. Darren Edwards doubled home Tilton and Tina Whitten singled home Klein. Steve Baker flew out to center, deep enough to score Edwards and give Menzel Lake their first lead at 3-2. But the inning was far from over as Ladd Lanz and Niki Klein both delivered RBI singles to push the advantage to 5-2.
Menzel picked up right where they left off in the second inning as a two-out single from Angel Tilton started another rally. Ken Klein, one of the five Kleins on Menzels roster, smacked a single and Lisa Head also singled to score Tilton. Edwards again doubled to score Klein and Tina Whitten singled home Head to give Menzel the 8-2 edge.
The Bulldogs got two runs back in the top of the third inning behind a two-run single from Benham. Unfortunately, the heart of the order struggled to get base hits and the Bulldogs could not get closer than 8-4.
Menzel got three more runs in the bottom of the third, highlighted by a towering blast from the bat of Steve Baker. Baker got hold of a pitch and deposited it deep in the tall grass beyond the outfield. Baker jogged around the bases with a rare over the fence home run.
Menzel continued their offensive onslaught as Ladd Lanz and Niki Klein both got on base. Dan Weiland drove an RBI double into the gap in left-center before Toni Hawthorn singled to score Klein. The three runs gave Menzel an 11-4 lead headed toward the fourth.
The Bulldogs produced no runs in the top half of the fourth inning, giving way to Menzel Lakes continued offensive fireworks. Darren Edwards put an exclamation point on his night with a two-out, two-run home run deep to right field. The fleet-footed Edwards zoomed around the bases before the Bulldogs could retrieve his drive.
Perhaps the highlight of the night for the Bulldogs came in the bottom half of the fourth inning with Menzel Lake up to bat. A screaming line drive hit down the third base was snared by Krista Peterson on the tops of her shoelaces. The ebullient Peterson lifted both hands high in the air to celebrate while racing off the field screaming, I caught it! I caught it!
Menzel would tack on another run in the fifth inning to close the game off at 14-4 due to mercy rule. Afterward coach Stacy Klein liked what she saw from her group.
This was much better than last week, said Klein. We had our sticks going tonight. And it was a whole team effort, not just Mr.-Ill-Keep-Running, Darren Edwards.
As for Peterson and her catch, the young third baseman sounded like an old veteran after the game.
I knew I was going to catch that, she said about the line drive in the fourth inning. I had a Cliff bar earlier today and that definitely helped.
While her catch was not enough to claim victory for the Bulldogs, it was plenty to liven the spirit in the dugout following the game.

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