Around the Horn

Week one is in the books! And honestly, it was a mini miracle that we got our first slate of games in. Last Wednesday, when we checked the advanced weather forecast, we saw a 100% chance of snow, with five to eight inches expected. We were very skeptical that we would be able to play. But as the week wore on and the snow prediction went away, it quickly became apparent that we wouldn’t have to postpone our opening weekend. And sure, it was cold, but at least it wasn’t like this:

Baseball is baseball, whether it’s 35 degrees or 95 degrees outside. And despite the cold, the kids braved the weather, and we had some very entertaining games across the board!

Here are the highlights:

 

BABL A

 

Bombers @ Mashers

Bombers 19

Mashers 7

In a rematch of last season’s BABL A championship game, the Bombers got their revenge as they handled the Mashers. The Bombers struck early thanks to the efforts of Matty S. both on the mound (2 IP, 0 R, 5 Ks) and at the plate (4 H, 6 RBI). The Bombers took advantage of some early errors and walks to put the game out of reach. The Mashers rallied in the middle innings by drawing plenty of walks and getting a clutch two-run triple from Ethan H., but it unfortunately wasn’t enough.

Matty S. of the Bombers dominated both on the mound and at the plate.

Homers @ Sluggers

Homers 3

Sluggers 6

The Sluggers checked in with their first win of the season, a 6-3 victory over the Homers. The combination of Jared S. and Edward F. on the mound was enough to stifle the Homers’ bats, as the two combined for 11 strikeouts in just four innings! Luc B. led the offensive charge with two hits and two RBIs. It was a good, well-played game that got the Sluggers off on the right foot!

 

Crushers @ Slammers

Crushers 13

Slammers 5

These two teams played their first Koa baseball games ever on Saturday! The Crushers came out strong and took it to the Slammers, winning their opener 13-5. It was the Alex B. show for the Crushers, as he went 3-4 with a homer and three RBIs at the plate while striking out five on the mound. Jesse N. and Max R. led the way led the way for the Slammers at the plate and on the mound, respectively.

 

Dingers @ Launchers

Dingers 4

Launchers 7

Two more teams brand new to Koa played in the second slate of BABL A games, as the Launchers won their opener 7-4 over the Dingers. Wes C. was a stud on the mound, as he really limited the Dingers offensively. The Dingers got production from Noah P., who doubled off Wes, and Dom S., who pitched well. These two teams will be looking to improve as they get more and more used to the Koa baseball schedule.

Next Week:

Bombers @ Homers

Mashers @ Sluggers

Sluggers @ Bombers

Homers @ Mashers

Crushers @ Dingers

Slammers @ Launchers

Launchers @ Crushers

Dingers @ Slammers

 

BABL AA

 

Fastballs @ Curveballs

Fastballs 5

Curveballs 5

A tie? Yes, the first BABL AA game of the season ended up in a draw, as the Fastballs and Curveballs worked to a 5-5 draw as the time limit expired. Connor G. led the Fastballs offensively with several huge hits. With the Fastballs up 4-2 late, however, the Curveballs came back, taking a brief lead thanks to clutch hits from Mateo L. and Brendan N. The Fastballs secured a tie late, but were done in by some bad luck.

 

Movers @ Baseball Factory

Movers 3

Factory 7

A good game between these two teams ended in a 7-3 victory for Baseball Factory. Nico S. set the tone early, striking out five in his two innings of work, and that was enough to help lead his team to victory. The bats never really came alive for the Movers, though Shrey A. had an extremely hard hit single in the game. Chand A. pitched well early on, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough.

 

Baseball Factory @ Fastballs

Factory 14

Fastballs 6

Baseball Factory continued to roll in their second game, defeating the Fastballs to go 2-0 in week 1. Factory jumped out to an early 3-0 lead, and after the Fastballs came back, they pulled away thanks to huge hits from Eddie B. and Andrew H., while Landon J. and Ben S. closed it out in relief. Will G. pitched very well in game 2 (5 IP, 5 Ks, 3 R), but just like in the Fastballs’ first game, there were too many other factors at play for the Fastballs.

 

Curveballs @ Movers

Curveballs 2

Movers 5

Unlike in their first game, the Movers came out strong in the early going against the Curveballs, taking a 3-0 lead in the first thanks to hits from Chand A., Shrey A., Aaron L., and Ichiro B. That was more than enough for Robert B. on the mound, as he silenced the Curveballs’ bats for most of the game. Cooper G. did all he could on the mound to keep the Curveballs in it, striking out eight in four innings.

 

Splitters @ Screwballs

Splitters 3

Screwballs 4

This rematch from last fall’s BABL AA championship game started off on a scary note, as Coach AJ of the Screwballs suffered a scary accident in pregame batting practice that knocked him out of the game before it even began. We all wish Coach AJ a speedy recovery. The Screwballs came out strong early in this one. Luke R. pitched as well as he could for the Splitters, as did Bobby B. for the Screwballs. With the game tied late and the Screwballs at the plate, Joey K. roped a walk-off single to send the Screwballs into their next game with plenty of momentum!

 

Sliders @ Changeups

Sliders 5

Changeups 4

The first game for each of these teams was a pitchers duel in the cold, but in the end the Sliders prevailed 5-4. Yousef Y. started for the Sliders and was magnificent – he notched 12 strikeouts in four innings while giving up no earned runs. Carmen F. chipped in offensively for the Sliders, and Schroeder K. picked up the save after the Changeups rallied late. Connor K. pitched well for the Changeups, but the team couldn’t muster much offense.

 

Screwballs @ Sliders

Screwballs 5

Sliders 1

The Screwballs took two in their doubleheader, defeating the Sliders 6-1 in game two for each team. Joey K. took the ball for game two following his walk off hit in game one and didn’t disappoint. Joey struck out 11 Sliders in four innings, and Lance H. pitched the end of the game to secure the Screwballs win. Wells T. pitched for the Sliders and allowed just three runs on two hits while striking out eight. He also collected a hit himself.

 

Changeups @ Splitters

Changeups 9

Splitters 10

The Splitters flipped the script from their game one defeat, beating the Changeups 10-9. The SPlitters jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, and though the Changeups came back with four of their own in the middle innings, thanks to several hits up and down the lineup, the Splitters just came right back. Noah W., making his Koa pitching debut, got the win in relief. Some timely baserunning from Nathan L. set up Eddie C. for a game-winning single – his third hit of the game! – to give the Splitters a walk-off of their own!

Next Week:

Fastballs @ Movers

Curveballs @ 11u Travel (scrimmage)

Changeups @ Screwballs

Sliders @ Splitters

 

BABL AAA

 

Slammers @ Dingers

Dingers @ Slammers

Slammers 22

Blasters 5

 

Dingers 4

Slammers 3

The BABL AAA season got off to a roaring start for the Slammers, as they took it to the Dingers 22-5 in game one of their double header. The whole team hit well. Sam S. and Aiden K. had some impressive hits early on, while Taylor W. and Will S. dominated on the mound. The Dingers never quit in game one, and Trevor C. and Kris K. pitched well in relief. Game two was much closer, with the Dingers winning in the top of the last inning. After Taylor W. and Thomas A. manufactured the go-ahead run for the Slammers in the bottom of the fifth, the Dingers got two runs back in the top of the sixth. Stevie J. started well for the Dingers, and Matthew L. closed the door to preserve the win.

 

Blasters @ Wreckers

Wreckers @ Blasters

Blasters 9

Wreckers 6

 

Wreckers 16

Blasters 16

The first games for the Blasters and Wreckers were both high-scoring affairs. Game one had some good pitching performances from both teams. Jeffrey B. started and was effective for the Blasters, while Kevin K. worked for the Wreckers. The Blasters still led the whole game though, as the Wreckers just couldn’t string together enough timely hits. Game two was more of a slugfest, but it ended in a tie. Ethan S. hit a home run for the Wreckers and Matt P. did well for the Blasters. The Wreckers came back from nine down in the fourth inning to force a tie, and got a clutch strikeout with the Blasters’ winning run on third before the time limit was called.

 

Launchers @ 13u West

Launchers 10

13u West 11

The defending champion Launchers opened up their season with a treat: a matchup against Koa’s brand new 13u west travel team! Former Launchers Nico C. and Cody P. were excited to face their old team, and their old teammates were eager to show the travel team what they could do. The Launchers started off dominating, with Larry B. and James H. limiting West’s offense. James also went yard with a home run! However, West was able to come all the way back in the middle innings thanks to Ben G., who hit a bomb to spark their rally. The Launchers ended up dropping a tough one, and will look to bounce back next weekend.

Next Week:

Launchers @ Dingers

Dingers @ Launchers

Slammers @ Wreckers

Wreckers @ Slammers

Blasters @ TBD

 

Travel

 

Koa 10U vs. Falls Church Copperheads 10U

Game 1: 8-5 loss

Game 2: 16-0 loss

The 10U Green Wave didn’t get off to the best of starts on Sunday in their season opener against Falls Church. Some walks and untimely hits from the Copperheads put Koa in a 4-0 hole early in the game. Down 7-1 heading into the fifth inning, the Green Wave rallied, with Evan K., Will K., and Drew J. leading the charge. Unfortunately, they fell just short. Game two was pretty forgettable. Some early walks helped the Copperheads to an 8-0 lead after one, and they never looked back. Blake G. and Reed S. pitched well in relief – and Koa only had two strikeouts despite the lack of hits – but were ultimately felled by the mercy rule. They’ll look to bounce back next weekend.

 

Koa 11U vs. Loudoun Aces 11U Blue

Game 1: 16-4 loss

Game 2: 12-11 win

With Coach AJ sidelined due to injury, Coach Ebert jumped in to help the 11U Green Wave in their season opener with Coach Billy. Game one wasn’t the best, as Koa jumped out to an early lead – thanks to Henry E.’s efforts on the mound – they just couldn’t keep. A bad call in the field led to the Green Wave unraveling, and they eventually lost a lopsided affair. That said, newly-appointed team captain Eli B. never let his team lose morale. What Eli brings to the team goes way beyond statistics – in fact, his leadership both on the field and in the dugout helped spur the team to victory in game two. Errors continued to bite Koa in game two, but they refused to let the Aces get comfortable and complacent, making a lot of noise to force their way back into the game. Tommy M. pitched extremely well in relief, and after coming into the bottom of the last inning down by two, Koa rallied. Eli got the opening hit in that inning, and Matthew K. walked off the Aces with a single into right field. THAT’S how you fight back!

 

Koa 12U vs. Loudoun South Eagles 12U

Game 1: 4-1 loss

Game 2: 9-6 loss

The 12U Green Wave, playing in the Metro division of the NVTBL, played two close games in their first weekend – unfortunately, they were on the wrong end in both of them. The team struggled to get any offense going in game one, though Andrew L. and Stephen W. put what they learned in their winter hitting clinics to good use by each collecting a hit. Massimo L. and Caleb K. both pitched well, but the lack of offense hurt the team, and the Eagles took a low-scoring game one. Game two saw more offense from both teams. The Eagles were up 7-0 after two-and-a-half, and though Koa was able to rally late, it was too little, too late. JB H., Mason R., and Luke B. all had multi-hit games, but the Green Wave struck out 11 times, which hurt a lot. Both games were close, so watch out once the bats turn on for the 12U Green Wave!

 

Koa 13U East vs. Metropolitan Senators 13U North

Game 1: 14-2 loss

Game 2: 13-12 loss

Now up in the Metro division in the NVTBL, the 13U East Green Wave was greeted rudely in game one, but fared much better in game two. A slow start and several mistakes in the field doomed Koa in game one. James R. and Patrick B. pitched admirably, but deserved a better fate. The were sparks of life late, but not nearly enough to come back from what happened earlier. Game two was a different tale, especially on offense. Koa scored four in the first, but the Senators came back. Koa scored four in the fourth, and three in the sixth for a commanding lead. Miles K., Devon G., and Jay A. (making his return to Koa) all had huge hits to get those leads. However, five runs, including the walk-off winner crossed home plate for the Senators in the bottom of the seventh.

 

Koa 13U West vs. South County Outlaws 13U

Game 1: 11-4 loss

Game 2: 12-11 loss

The brand new 13U West Green Wave technically made their debut on Saturday against the Launchers, but made their NVTBL debut against South County the next day. Like their East counterparts, game one saw the team struggle, but they bounced back in a much better effort for game two. Walks ended up hurting Koa in these games, as Coach Mike and Coach Nevin see what they have in their guys. But that may come sooner than many expected. From Coach Mike, “The progress these boys have made this far has been above and beyond what I was expecting. They all work hard and try to help each other get better. Looking forward to the rest of this season.”

Tommy D. had an excellent all-around day, barreling up every ball he hit, pitching well, running the bases well, and playing great defense on the left side of the infield. Kenny Q. and Charlie G. also both drew praise for their work behind the plate.

 

Koa 14U vs. Moose 14U

Game 1: 10-9 win

Game 2: 15-0 loss

The 14U Green Wave opened their season in exciting fashion with a late win over Moose in game one. Despite Reece E. being the only Koa player with more than one hit, the team effort was certainly there. Will P. had an outstanding catch, Jasper C. had a clutch two-RBI single, and despite too many strikeouts, the Green Wave pulled out a win in extra innings. Game two was much different. Despite Dylan P., Nico L., and Jasper C. all throwing strikes, errors helped Moose jump out to an early lead and they never looked back. The bats suddenly went quiet in game two, though the team did cut back on its strikeouts. They’ll look forward to their next games at Richard Montgomery HS next weekend.

Next Week:

Koa 10U vs. Dig In Baseball 10U

Koa 11U vs. Sterling XPlosion 11U

Koa 12U vs. Burke Bulldogs 12U Black

Koa 13U East vs. Arlington Senators 13U American

Koa 13U West vs. Dig In Baseball 13U

Koa 14U vs. Vienna Wildcats 14U/Falls Church Colts 14U

 

Player of the Week

Matty S. – Bombers

4 H, 6 RBI

 

Pitcher of the Week

Joey K. – Screwballs

4 IP, 1 ER, 11 Ks (also had a walk-off single the game before)

 

Standings

BABL A W-L BABL AA W-L BABL AAA W-L
Bombers 1-0 Factory 2-0 Blasters 1-0-1
Crushers 1-0 Screwballs 2-0 Slammers 1-1
Launchers 1-0 Splitters 1-1 Dingers 1-1
Sluggers 1-0 Sliders 1-1 Wreckers 0-1-1
 Homers  0-1 Movers 1-1 Launchers 0-1
 Dingers  0-1 Fastballs 0-1-1
 Slammers  0-1 Curveballs 0-1-1
 Mashers  0-1 Changeups 0-2
Travel W-L
10U 0-2
11U 1-1
12U 0-2
13U East 0-2
13U West 0-2
14U 1-1
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