Armadillos remain perfect with Supples victory (6/4/09)

June 4, 2009

On Sunday, the Williston Armadillos traveled to Duxbury, well aware that they would have to be on their game to prevail against Mad River Valley, which sported a 3-1 record and was tied for second place behind the undefeated Dillos.

Williston rose to the occasion, rapping out 11 hits and capitalizing on 10 walks to defeat Mad River Valley 10-3. With the win, the 5-0 Dillos preserved their status as the only undefeated team in the Vermont Senior Baseball League.

While various players had key roles in the victory, with all 11 reaching base on at least one occasion and the team scoring in seven of the first eight innings, the offense was powered by Pookie Martin (3-4, BB, HR, 2 RBIs, 2 runs) and Billy “Vegas” Daw (3-4, RBI, 2 runs).

On the mound, the Dillos’ dynamic duo of Bill Supple (0-4, BB, 2 runs) and Greg Bolger (0-3, 2 BB, 1 run, 1 RBI) collectively held their opponents to just eight hits and three walks, while striking out seven. Supple pitched the first six innings, allowing one run on six hits and two walks, while striking out four, to gain the victory and improve his record to 2-0. Bolger pitched the last three innings, yielding just two hits and one walk while striking out three. He surrendered two runs, only one of which was earned.

“Both pitchers were awesome today. Supple’s control was pinpoint and Bolger had all five of his pitches working,” said catcher Darby Crum (1-4, 2B).

As has been true throughout the year, Williston scored early. The Dillos scored two runs in the first when center fielder Reid Crosby (1-4, BB, 2 RBIs), making his Senior League debut, led off with a walk, but was forced at second on Supple’s grounder. Bolger walked and Martin singled in Supple. Bolger scored when Pistol Pete Picard (0-3, 2 BB, 1 RBI) grounded into a force play and barely beat the throw to first to deny Mad River Valley a double play.

The Dillos scored another run in the second after two were out. Daw singled, right fielder Brian Donahue (1-3, BB, 1 run) walked and Ken Freeman (1-3, BB, 1 RBI) singled to right to drive home Daw.

The lead increased to 5-0 in the third. Supple walked, Martin singled and Picard was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Dann “DVDV” van der Vliet (1-4, BB, 1 run, 1 RBI) then singled home Supple and Martin.

Three more runners scored in the fourth. Daw and Donahue singled, Freeman walked and Crosby plated the two lead runners with a single to left. Freeman scored two batters later when Bolger grounded into a force out.

Another run in the fifth gave the Dillos a 9-0 lead. DVDV reached on an error by Mad River Valley’s third baseman, first baseman Dennis Johnson (0-3, BB) was hit by a pitch and Daw singled to score DVDV.

After Mad River Valley scored one in the bottom of the fifth on a walk and two singles to cut the lead to 9-1, Williston got that run back in the seventh when Martin grunted a fastball over the left center field fence for a home run. Mad River Valley managed two more runs in the eighth inning, capitalizing on an Armadillo error, a walk and two infield singles.

Next week, the Dillos travel to Woodsville, N.H. to play the 2-3 Red Sox. Game time is noon. League standings and individual and team statistics are online at www.scorebook.com. Enter “Vermont Senior Baseball League” under league name search.