ASL Powerhouse Gets Shut Down
The Austin Chronicle defeats BookPeople 9-5 and clinch a spot in the Alternative Softball League playoffs
By Kristine Tofte,
11:52AM, Thu. Aug. 21, 2008
I hate to say it, but those 11am Sunday practices have helped the Chronicle's game phenomenally. I hate to say it because I have to be at those morning practices, and typically after a night of boozin' and bruisin'. There was a 90% chance of rain on game night, Monday, Aug. 18, but our game vs. second-place BookPeople went on as planned, in the muggy, saunalike night. This game would be different than our last round with BookPeople, who clobbered us 28-14 earlier this season and made us all realize that practice was necessary. Thanks for that, BookPeople.
The first three innings went back and forth – Chronicle up one, tie, BookPeople up one, then ending the third inning tied at 2. In the first Shannon Stott scored a run on a hit to deep right field by Travis. In the next inning we played good defense, allowing BookPeople to only plate one run, but our offense struggled, with three batters up and three down. Bottom of the third, Doug Freeman placed the ball right over the rover for a double and picking up an RBI (scoring James Renovitch).
Top of the fourth, the Chron's catcher, yours truly, was having a hard time. First, I didn't catch a foul popped back to me by Mandy Brooks; the ball went right over my head. Then, I couldn't make a catch from third baseman Travis, and BookPeople scored their only run of the inning. Bottom of the fourth, our offense kicked ass. Shawn Badgley was up first and picked up a double. Mike Bartnett then advanced Shawn to third with a double. Next was Travis, who picked up two RBIs and a triple, and he was eventually brought home by Cody Kirk with a single. Michael King batted in one last run for the inning, bringing the score to 6-3, a lead we never surrendered.
The fifth inning was scoreless. The Chronicle defense was on, but the offense was lacking – with three up, three down. Top of the sixth, BookPeople scored their last run of the game. Bottom of the inning, Shawn started the rally, though it might have been hard to tell with only a single. Mike B then advanced Shawn to third with a double. Next, Travis stepped up to the plate and picked up an RBI, while Mark Fagan scored Travis on a grounder – the last two to cross plate for the rest of the game. Top of the seventh, Shawn (at shortstop) and Shannon Stott (at second base) were a defensive powerhouse. The first two BookPeople outs were fielder's choice plays at second base – the first a throw from Shawn to Shannon and the second a throw from Shannon to Shawn. Shawn caught a pop-up at shortstop for the final out. Bottom of the inning, it was three up, three down again for the Chronicle.
Top of the ninth, it was time for the Chronicle to hold BookPeople. With one BookPeople out, we were ready for the second. Brian was up to bat; the ball dropped near first, and King went to grab it. Shannon ran over from second to back up King, who tagged first base for the second out, with the runner collided with Shannon at full speed. It was the crash heard 'round the Alternative Softball World. Shannon crumbled to the ground in agony. She was eventually carried off the field to a round of applause, but the game had to go on – we had to get that last out.
"Alright guys, let's show Shannon just how valuable she is to the Chronicle's team by coming back and winning," said BookPeople's Rose. Valuable is right, but we still won the game. The next player up was the last player out, and we took home another victory, 9-5. Clinching our playoff spot, "We're hitting our stride right before the playoffs!" said coach Bobby Leath. That night Shannon was taken by ambulance to the hospital. She wasn't doing well and really scared us, and we thought she may have a concussion. But after a thorough check out, she was diagnosed with a very deep bruise on her right leg. We all hope you get better soon; you bring so much to the Chronicle team. Expect her back and better than ever next time – watch out, Waterloo.