By Scott Prater
When Fernando Santos drove a first-inning pitch over the outstretched glove of Space Innovation Development Center first baseman Taz Brown, 3rd Space Experimentation Squadron, seemed to have picked up where it left off in its first game of the season.
Santos’ shot soared up the first base line and rolled all the way to the fence in right field before an SIDC outfielder got a handle on it, and by then Santos was already rounding second base.
By the time shortstop Joey Stolzman cut the ball off and heaved it home, Santos was halfway to the dug out, smiling from ear to ear after completing a three-run inside-the-park home run.
Unfortunately for 3 SES, its offense managed only one run over the next five innings.
SIDC answered with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the first inning and never let up in a 19-4 Schriever intramural softball victory June 21.
It was a welcome show of offense for SIDC, which suffered a lopsided defeat in its first game June 17.
“We’re an aggressive team,” Stolzman said. “We just didn’t hit in that first game, didn’t field very well either and we had a few slip ups, like running to the wrong plate, and throwing to the wrong base.”
June 21, the team appeared in mid-season form.
Clean-up hitter Jay Worrell drove in those three first-inning runs and continued to punish the 3rd SES defense from then on. He reached base in all four of his at bats and finished the game with six RBI.
“It’s nice to have guys who can hit,” Stolzman said. Obviously Jay had a great game, Bill Scruitsky collected a couple of hits and Taz was great at the plate too. Plus we played great defense.”
Unusual for even the best intramural teams, SIDC played the entire five-inning game by committing just one error.
“Our outfielders got under everything and we got out of more than a few innings unscathed,” Scruitsky said. “But the key was our offense. You can give up something defensively, but in slow pitch softball, you’ve got to score runs.”
Conversely, 3rd SES, which entered the game with a 1-0 record after a 21-13 win over 50th Contracting Squadron June 17, couldn’t find its rhythm against SIDC.
Santos scored the team’s only other run after leading off the fourth inning with a triple, again to right field.
“Maybe we could use some more practice, but honestly, we’re really just out here to have fun,” said 3rd SES’s Adam Larson. “We’re part of the SIDC, but we field our own team in an effort to get playing time for more people.”