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 BY JEFF FALK

 ANNVILLE – There are a number of intriguing subplots currently playing out in the Lebanon County American Legion Baseball League. There always are.

 But the most compelling story line is the battle being waged for second place in the West Division.

 On a sticky Tuesday night at Annville-Cleona High School, Annville got a leg up on Fredericksburg for the West’s final playoff spot, with a 3-1 victory. Annville got off to a fast start, which made starting pitcher Eric Sipling’s job that much easier.

 The outcome gave Annville, now 4-6, sole possession of second place in the local summer baseball circuit. The loss was Fredericksburg’s fifth straight and dropped it to 2-6 on the season.

 Annville and Fredericksburg are scheduled to meet two more times before the regular season concludes.

  “They’re there with us,” said Annville head coach Ken Sauley of Fredericksburg. “Other than Campbelltown, Ephrata and Myerstown, we’re all bunched. It can go any way.

 “We’ve got seven games left,” continued Sauley. “We have to win them all. Can we do it? I don’t know. But we’re going to try. Right now, we have our destiny in our hands. We win, we’re in. If we lose some games, we’re not.”

  “They are similar to us,” said Fredericksburg head coach Tim Schaeffer of Annville. “They have a decent team. The top of their lineup is pretty good. And their pitcher threw really, really well tonight.

 “The goal is to make the playoffs,” Schaeffer continued, “That’s what we’re focused on right now. And the way things are looking, we’re going to have to scratch out some wins. We have to find the right configuration in our lineup. That’s my first concern. We may have to juggle it up a little bit.”

 Annville grabbed the game’s momentum by the throat in the bottom of the first inning, with three straight hits to start the frame.

 It was Cameron Freeman’s lead-off single that got the home side off and winging, and after Freeman stole second, Josh Speraw knocked him in with a double. After that, Alec Santiago bashed the RBI-double that made it 2-0.

 “I think we have pretty good ptiching and defense,” said Sauley. “This was our fourth game in-a-row where we played pretty well. The pitching and defense have been there. The offense has been the struggle. You can’t do a lot of things when you’re behind.

 “Tonight was better than we’ve been playing,” Sauley added. “It was the best game we played all year.”

  “The kids got a little dejected right away,” said Schaeffer. “We fell behind and hung our heads a little bit. When you get down one or two runs and you’re slumping, it’s tough.”

 Sipling made the early pair stand up. The tall glass of right-handed water worked out of some first-inning trouble, then retired eight Post 915 batters in-a-row.

 Fredericksburg got to Sipling in the top of the fourth, courtesy of Trevor Zohn’s walk, Seth Daubert’s single, a wild pitch and Bailey Keefer’s run-scoring grounder, to pull to within 2-1 of the lead. That run snapped F-burg’s score-less innings streak at 17.

 For his part, Sipling went the distance, fired 99 pitches, struck out 11, walked one and gave up five hits.

 “He was great,” said Sauley of Sipling. “With that fastball, it looked like he got stronger as the game went on. He pitches in college for Elizabethtown. It was not his first rodeo.”

 “Annville’s kid pitched a fanstastic game,” said Schaeffer. “He worked the corners really well. He lived there. If I’m a pitcher, I’m going to live there too. We’re just not scoring runs.”

  “Our hitting needs to come around,” added Schaeffer. “I’m just not sure what it is. Maybe some of the kids at the top of the lineup are putting too much pressure on themsleves.”

 Annville pushed its lead to 3-1 in the bottom of the fifth, after Freeman and Speraw recorded no-out safeties. Jeremy Seyfert plated Freeman with a sacrifice fly to left field.

  Fredericksburg starter Brandon Shollenberger competed admirably and finished what he started, as well. On 94 pitches, Shollenberger fanned six, walked two and yielded seven hits.

 “We did enough to win,” said Sauley. “The first couple of innings we got going and we kept it going. We played a little small ball. But we have to work on our hitting a little bit.

 “He (Shollenberger) threw well,” continued Sauley. “He kept us off balance. We squared the ball up a couple of times.”

  “He kept the ball down,” said Schaeffer of Shollenberger. “He got the ball up in the first inning. But after that, he was fine. I think he only gave up a few hits after that.

 “My pitching is spot on and our defense isn’t making many mistakes,” added Schaeffer. “We just need to hit the baseball. They (his players) need to go back to having fun playing the game. But we’re alright.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To purchase images in this article email jkfalk2005@yahoo.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2019 Annville Schedule

Day Date Time     Score Visitors Home Venue  
  Tue 5/28/2019 6:00 pm   W 2-1 Annville   5th Ward   5th Ward Athletic Club  
  Fri 5/31/2019 6:00 pm   L 0-8 Annville   Campbelltown   Palmyra High School  
  Tue 6/4/2019 6:00 pm   L 14-1 Ephrata   Annville   Annville High School  
  Wed 6/12/2019 6:00 pm   L 8-5 Richland   Annville   Annville High School  
  Fri 6/14/2019 6:00 pm   W 6-3 Annville   Conrad Weiser   Womelsdorf  
  Sun 6/16/2019 7:00 pm   L 2-4 Annville   Ephrata   War Memorial Field  
  Mon 6/17/2019 6:00 pm   L 1-0 Myerstown   Annville   Annville High School  
  Tue 6/18/2019 6:00 pm   L 0-1 Annville   Myerstown   Myerstown  
  Mon 6/24/2019 6:00 pm   FFT-W 0-0 5th Ward   Annville   Annville High School  
  Tue 6/25/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Fredericksburg   Annville   Annville High School  
  Wed 6/26/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Campbelltown   Annville   Annville High School  
  Fri 6/28/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   Annville   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Mon 7/1/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   Annville   5th Ward   5th Ward Athletic Club  
  Tue 7/2/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Annville   Campbelltown   Palmyra High School  
  Wed 7/3/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Conrad Weiser   Annville   Annville High School  
  Fri 7/5/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Fredericksburg   Annville   Annville High School  
  Mon 7/8/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Annville   Richland   Lyle Krall Stadium @ Elco High School  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 2019 Fredericksburg Schedule

Day Date Time     Score Visitors Home Venue  
  Thu 5/30/2019 7:00 pm   W 9-4 Fredericksburg   5th Ward   5th Ward Athletic Club  
  Tue 6/4/2019 7:00 pm   L 8-4 Campbelltown   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Sat 6/8/2019 6:00 pm   W 5-0 Fredericksburg   Conrad Weiser   Womelsdorf  
  Wed 6/12/2019 7:00 pm   L 5-6 Fredericksburg   Ephrata   War Memorial Field  
  Fri 6/14/2019 7:00 pm   L 8-4 Myerstown   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Sun 6/16/2019 7:00 pm   L 2-0 Conrad Weiser   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Wed 6/19/2019 7:00 pm   PPD N/R Ephrata   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Mon 6/24/2019 6:00 pm   L 0-2 Fredericksburg   Campbelltown   Palmyra High School  
  Tue 6/25/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Fredericksburg   Annville   Annville High School  
  Wed 6/26/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   5th Ward   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Thu 6/27/2019 5:30 pm   TBP   Fredericksburg   Richland   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Thu 6/27/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   Richland   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Fri 6/28/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   Annville   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Sun 6/30/2019 5:00 pm   TBP   Fredericksburg   Myerstown   Myerstown  
  Mon 7/1/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   Campbelltown   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Tue 7/2/2019 7:00 pm   TBP   5th Ward   Fredericksburg   Earl Wenger Memorial Field  
  Fri 7/5/2019 6:00 pm   TBP   Fredericksburg   Annville   Annville High School  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Lebanon County American Legion Baseball League

 West Division Standings

Team Won Lost Tied Pct. GB RF RA
Campbelltown 8 1 0 .889 61 17
Annville 4 6 0 .400 4.5 19 41
5th Ward 3 8 0 .273 6.0 23 52
Fredericksburg 2 6 0 .250 5.5 28 33

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 East Division Standings

Team Won Lost Tied Pct. GB RF RA
Ephrata 9 2 0 .818 93 36
Myerstown 7 4 0 .636 2.0 45 42
Richland 3 5 0 .375 4.5 37 66
Conrad Weiser 2 6 0 .250 5.5 13 32

 

 

 

 

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