After a holiday hiatus that lasted nearly two weeks, Honesdale had to deal with some serious rust Monday night.
The Ramblers welcomed Hughes Construction to Western Wayne for a Collegiate Summer Baseball League contest and nearly suffered a devastating loss.
Thankfully for local fans, though, two players in particular rode to the rescue. Ryan Loughran and Tim Granquist each played a key role in what became a 7-6 Honesdale victory.
Loughran drew the starting assignment and shook off a rough first inning en route to yet another complete game decision.
Granquist provided the offensive firepower, driving in four runs in his first two at-bats, almost single handedly erasing an early 5-0 deficit.
Neither development surprised veteran player/coach John Granquist.
"I never worry too much about those guys," he told TWI Sports. "I've been playing with them for a long time and I know I can depend on them. Whenever we need a big play, Ryan and Tim are always right there."
With this razor-thin win, Honesdale upped its record to 5-5 on the season.
The Ramblers return to action this weekend. The defending CSBL champs are set to host Wagner's on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.
Loughran hadn’t pitched in two weeks and Hughes took advantage in the top of the first inning.
The visitors erupted for five runs in the frame, highlighted by Chris Pollick’s 3-run homer.
“Yeah...that was a little ugly,”?Ryan said with a smile. “I didn’t have any velocity on my fastball there at the beginning, so I?really had to make some adjustments on the fly.”
One of those adjustments was purely mechanical and the other was strategic, but the results were stellar. Loughran blanked the visitors over the next four frames on his way to a well-deserved win.
“It was just straight rust out there in the first inning,”?Ryan said. “My curveball was the one pitch I had a handle on. It was slow, but I?was locating it really well.”
Loughran worked seven ininngs en route to a complete game decision. Ryan fanned four and allowed Hughes only an RBI?single by Mike Accardi after that rough first frame.
Honesdale retaliated in the bottom of the first with a 4-run rally.
Nick Mazza, Justin Magsitro and Mark Granquist each delivered a key base knock, but Tim Granquist provided the firepower.
The Ramblers’ veteran outfielder crushed a towering two-run homer to left center, drawing his team to within a run. Granquist came through again in the home third, blasting a two-run double up the alley in right center.
Nick Petrillo, Tim Granquist, Mark Granquist and Mazza each contributed two hits to the cause. Magistro ripped an RBI?triple and scored in the home half of the first.
Score by Innings...
HUG 5 0 0 0 0 1 0 - 6
RAM 4 0 3 0 0 0 x - 7