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ACADEMICS PLUS BASEBALL | Falcons lose season opener

Academics Plus’ first baseball game of the season Monday didn’t go quite as well as Coach John Harrison hoped.

With a team comprised of youth and several players who have never played baseball, Harrison expected some errors against Quitman. He was hoping the Falcons would overcome the miscues quickly, but that didn’t happen as they lost 16-2.

“In the first inning, they had two outs and no one on base,” Harrison said. “They got 10 runs on two hits, three walks and several errors. We dropped fly balls and had kids boot it. I expected that, but they could have gotten out with zero runs instead of 10.”

Harrison said the same thing occurred in the second inning. The first pitch was a pop-up that was dropped then a pop-up foul ball was dropped. Though Harrison thinks nerves caused some of the errors, he was pleased with several aspects.

“Will Westenburger did a good job on the mound and didn’t lose control,” he said. “Steven Harris went in the fourth inning, and it was his first time he ever pitched. I was very pleased with his performance. We had chances to score runs but just couldn’t put it together.”

Harrison was also satisfied with the guys who had never played before and mentioned freshman centerfielder Devon Mallory and junior Evan Backers. What Harrison was most thrilled with was the attitude of his players.

“That is what I am pleased with more than anything,” he said. “They’ve had positive attitudes the entire time and had fun. I’m O.K. with that because it is very important. We were one play from getting out of a bad inning. That’s what happens when you have young and inexperienced kids.”

Academics Plus (0-1) began 1A-5 conference play yesterday against Sacred Heart then faces Mount Vernon-Enola on Thursday and Wonderview on Friday. Top pitcher Paul Sheesley didn’t pitch on Monday so he could be ready for conference competition.

“He looked sharp,” Harrison said. “Monday, we learned about ourselves, and that is what I wanted to get out of it.”

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