EAST SPRINGFIELD - The Richmond Legion Post 740 baseball team ended a losing streak at the expense of a struggling Steubenville Post 33 club at home Wednesday.
"Any time you play well and win you're happy," said Post 740 head coach Sam Davis. "The kids did a good job and the breaks all went our way.
"It was one of those games. We're happy for the win, but we know these games are all practice. We're happy for the kids and we have the utmost respect for Steubenville, obviously. We play them a bunch of times and it could have easily been the other way."
MEETING AT SECOND — Steubenville Post 33’s Steve Mihalyo laughs with, from left, Richmond Post 740’s Nolan Marcus, Mark Smyth, Phil Hilt, and Greg Stagani during a pitching change Monday in East Springfield. Richmond topped Steubenville, 9-1.
-- Fred Younce
The 9-1 Richmond win lifted its record to 2-3 and ended a three-game skid while dropping Steubenville to 4-3 and handing Post 33 its third straight defeat.
"It's just one of those games," said Post 33 skipper Mark Stacy. "We're not striking out. We're just not finding the holes.
"You go through times like this and things are going to get better."
Post 740 got things going early, tagging Post 33 starting pitcher Josh Malesky for three runs in the bottom of the first. Josh Pasek drew a lead of walk followed by a Chad Wickham single. Sammy Orr then singled in Pasek, Greg Stagani doubled home Wickham and Mark Smyth pushed home Orr on a groundout to second to make the score 3-0 Richmond.
"We had a young fellow on the mound for us pitching in Zack Williams," said Davis. "It was his first time pitching for us.
"We really didn't know him that well in that we've watched him throw, but not in a game situation and for him and us both it was nice for us to score some runs early.
"We've been struggling, and it's one of those deals where you know you're going to break out sometime. We just happened to break out tonight."
Two innings later the home team was at it again. With the bases loaded and one out Phil Hilt stroked a single to right that pushed home Stagani and Smyth. Two batters later, Williams and Wickham produced back-to-back run-scoring singles to plate Hilt and Nolan Marcus to make the score 7-0.
Richmond went into cruise control from there, picking up only two more sixth inning runs. Hilt pushed home Smyth on a groundout to second for his third RBI of the game and Alec Jones drove home Ty Yocum with a double to left. Post 33's lone run came on an Alex Young sacrifice fly that scored John Linn in the top of the sixth.
"It's just one of those times in everyone's season where you just don't get things done," said Stacy. "We had 13 innings in a row without scoring a run. Today, we hit several balls really hard.
"I think Aleks Porreca had three really good at bats and he only got one hit for it. Joe Pierro hit the ball right on the button three times and and got nothing for it."
Williams made it into the fifth giving up no runs on two hits to pick up the win. Troy Fairclough took over with one out in the fifth and went one full frame surrendering a run on two hits and picking up the only strikeout for the Richmond staff. Wickham closed things out by giving up no runs on one hit.
"Zack did an outstanding job," said Davis. "I can't say enough about him.
"Zack and Troy both did a great job and obviously Chad came in and closed it out for us. We lost three in a row so it's obviously good to get a win."
Josh Malesky took the loss for Post 33. He gave up six runs on five hits. Aleks Porreca entered with one out in the third and was credited with three runs on six hits.
Post 740 travels to Toronto today for a doubleheader with Post 86 starting at 5 p.m. Post 33 is also in action, hosting Cadiz Post 34 at 6 p.m.
Richmond 9, Steubenville 1
Post 33 000 001 0 - 1 5 1
Post 740 304 002 x - 9 11 1
POST 33 (4-3): Malesky (LP, 1K, 3BB), Porreca (3rd, 2K, 4BB) and Linn. J. Pierro d; Panella d; Mihalyo s; Porreca s; Bolyog s; Young rbi.
POST 740 (2-3): Williams (WP, 0K, 5BB), Fairclough (1K, 3BB), Wickham (0K, 1BB) and Orr. Wickham 2s, rbi; Orr 3s, rbi; Stagani d, rbi; Smyth rbi; Yocum s; Hilt s, 3rbi; Williams s, rbi; Fairclough s; Jones d, rbi.