By Frank Rizzo
MONGAUP VALLEY July 17, 2001 Roches Garage did not have its A team in last Thursdays Monticello mens Softball League A Division game against rival Lewis Auto Parts (LAP).
And ultimately, Roches did not play its A game, resulting in a 5-4 loss to Lewis at Eddie Collins Memorial Park in Mongaup Valley.
It was the first loss for Roches after eight wins. LAP improved to 42.
With the A Division reduced to three teams, each squad plays the others three times. Simply Irresistible is the third team, made up of players formerly with now defunct Physical Connection and Turi Construction.
Roches and LAP will meet again tonight.
In the first meeting between the teams, Scott Mosher was on the mound as Roches breezed to a 15-0 win.
On Thursday Merle Connor did the pitching for Roches and the same result seemed in the offing. Connor retired the side in the top of the first, and Roches scored twice in the bottom of the frame.
John Wilhelm and John Mancuso single against LAPs Bob Head, and were moved up by Jeremy Ernsts sac bunt.
Mike Yager lofted a high fly behind second base, and the fleet Wilhelm beat the throw to the plate. Mancuso then scored on a single by Jim Brush.
Stu Parsons led off the second with a double and stayed there when Craig Smith reached on an error. Kurt Buddenhagen advanced the pair with a bunt, but Connor retired Billy Reichmann and Glenn Rosenberger to keep the 0 on LAPs side of the scoreboard.
LAP broke through in the third. Reichmann led off with on a two-base error. Tim Chopper Ackermann lifted a ball near first base. Mike Yager reached over the fence to snare it as Reichmann tagged and broke for third. Yagers throw bounced past Wilhelm and Reichmann scampered home.
Roches padded its lead in the fourth as Brush reached on an error. Then, with two outs, Brush scored when Moshers dribbler stayed fair down the first base line and he beat out Heads throw.
In the fifth Roches went up 4-1. Wilhelm doubled and crossed the plate when Mancuso also followed with a double.
LAP then scored four in the sixth to win it.
Tim Hubert was hit by Connor and went to second on a wild pitch. Mike Weir grounded out to Connor, sending Hubert to third.
Parsons then lashed a single to score Hubert and went to second on a wild pitch while Smith drew a walk.
Kurt Buddenhagen then hit a triple to left, a ball lost in the lights by new Roches member Brian Collier, nephew of Connor.
Buddenhagen then trotted home with the winning run when Billy Reichmann skied to center.
In the sixth Yakin singled and eventually reached third, but with two outs Head retired Mosher to preserve the lead.
Head also survived yielding a leadoff walk to Connor in the seventh, retiring the next three batters, including the dangerous Wilhelm and Mancuso.