SPRINGFIELD >> Phil-Mont Christian probably wishes Friday afternoon’s Bicentennial Athletic League Constitution Division matchup with Faith Christian was some sort of bad April Fools joke.
Unfortunately for the Falcons, the 16-0 mercy rule loss was an actual result as errors and poor at-bats were the chief downfalls of Phil-Mont.
It took until the third inning for the game to get truly out of hand as the Lions put up 11 runs with six hits on nine Phil-Mont errors. The inning saw 16 Lions come to plate and featured four extra base hits.
“Phil-Mont did well but they had some errors,” Faith Christian coach Dave Demar said. “We watch for that with our own team and we know it could happen to either team. We hit. We hit today.”
Offensively for the Falcons, and defensively for the Lions, there wasn’t a whole lot going on. Phil-Mont sent 18 hitters to the plate, two walked, shortstop Andy Ennis had the only hit of the game, and the rest of the at bats resulting in a strikeout. Of the 15 strikeouts by the Falcons, six of them were looking.
“When you [look) at the experience of ninth graders they’re so not used to seeing the ball come out of the pitcher’s hand,” Phil-Mont coach Rob Lyons said. “No matter how much we work on it in practice and the three weeks leading up to the season they can only see so many reps.”
While there are seldom times for an excuse for a team to be on the wrong end of such a lopsided result, Phil-Mont lays claim to one of them. The Falcons roster 11 players on its varsity team, nine of them are freshman, most with limited or no other playing experience.
“We’re a really young team that’s not only young and inexperienced at the varsity level but young and inexperienced with baseball,” Lyons said.
Phil-Mont understands it’s a team that is going to take some lumps this season so its just going to have to extract whatever lessons come out of Friday’s game and apply them to the next one.
“Just the experience of playing right now is great for our team,” Lyons said. “Every pitch that every kid saw, every rep that every kid saw, in just a game situation is so much better for them.”