Wednesday, May 18
By Chandler Ingle
Goshen takes game 1 in Nicaragua.
In Goshen’s first of six games on their three week stint in Nicaragua, the Leafs struggled offensively but used a combination of stellar pitching performances and defense to defeat Los Cafeteros Carazo 3-1 at the Estadio Municipial Pedro Selva in Jinotepe, Nicaragua.
Los Cafeteros Carazo’s are a Division 1 semi-professional baseball team in Nicaragua, and is said to be the best team the Leafs will play during their trip.
“It was a great experience,” said Goshen head coach Alex Childers. “I thought the competition was good, and just happy to wrap up our first game with a W.”
Blake Collins took the ball in game 1 and threw 5 shutout innings of the 9 inning contest. Collins only allowed three hits – with only 1 coming after the second inning – all the while saving himself a hit on a hot comebacker that ricocheted off his foot before picking it up and recording a putout while walking 2 walks and striking out 1 before handing the ball off to Travis Grimm. Grimm surrendered no runs on 2 hits while walking 2 and striking out 1 in 2 innings of relief. The Leafs then called on Michael Walker to close the door and earned the save in the 8th and 9th in which he surrendered Carazo’s only run of the contest while striking out 1, walking 1, and scattering 2 hits.
The Leafs also used sound glove-work in the field to hold Carazo scoreless until the 8th. Third baseman Austin Rook led the Leafs with 6 putouts followed by left fielder Ryan with 4 putouts that included tracking down two deep fly balls in the gap.
On the offensive side, the Leafs were led by first baseman Derrick Oley who finished the day 2-4 with 2 singles and an RBI that plated Hartig. Goshen could only muster up 5 hits in the game. Of the Leafs 5 hits, first baseman Derrick Oley led the charge by finishing the day 2-4 with 2 singles and an RBI. Hartig and second baseman Brad Stoltzfus accounted for the teams only extra base hits by registering a double each. Catcher Clinton Stroble added a single.
Of their 3 runs two were unearned by way of a throwing error in the fourth inning on a Hartig groundball that scored Stoltzfus from second and a wild pitch in the fifth that scored Oley on a close call at the plate.
Goshen continues its trip with 3 games this weekend by traveling to Masatepe for a 9 A.M. start before heading to Santa Teresa for a 2 P.M. contest. They then finish up the weekend against La Conquista. First pitch is at 10 a.m.