A dime held off a dozen.
Whittell High’s baseball team used a 10-run fourth inning Tuesday to win its home opener, 14-12, against Rite of Passage at Lampe Park in Gardnerville.
With the Warriors down 6-4, freshman Bobby Lee opened the inning’s scoring with a three-run homer to left, pushing across Dusty Apocotos and Trent Gordon. Phil Villeza, Patrick Geimer and Phil Barnes added singles before Apocotos, hitting for the second time in the inning, cleared the bases with a smash to right, which the fielder misplayed. Villeza closed the scoring with a two-run triple.
“The was a huge confidence-building inning. This team never gives up,” said Whittell coach Brian Geimer.
Villeza allowed one earned run with two strikeouts and two walks in three innings to notch the win. Bryce Schussel added two innings of middle relief and Devon Apocotos went two scoreless for the save. Lee was 2 for 4 with a double and Dusty Apocotos scored three runs.
“We still have to work on defense, but the pitching and the bats are moving well,” Geimer said. “They’re hustling and doing what I’m asking of them.”
The Warriors needed to dig deep to preserve the victory. After the Raiders scored once in the top of the fifth, they took advantage of a Whittell “mental lapse” to plate five unearned runs in the sixth.
Dropped flyballs, misplayed grounders and overthrown bases contributed to the comeback. But Whittell pulled it together, ending the inning on a run-down double play before Apocotos closed out the seventh.
“Of all the things they had to do (Tuesday), they came together to hold the lead and pulled through to get the win. That was most important. I’m proud of them,” Geimer said.
Whittell, 1-0, hosts Truckee Saturday at 10 a.m. at Lampe.
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