Ho'okele Staff | Jun 08, 2012
The 25th Air Support Operation Squadron (25 ASOS) intramural softball squad kept pace with the top teams in the White Division by sweeping both games of a twin bill June 4 at Millican Field, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
In the first game, the 25 ASOS beat the Divers, 12-3, and then came back to defeat the 647th Civil Engineer Squadron (647 CES), 13-8, to gain their 10th victory of the season against only one defeat.
“This was real big right now,” said 25 ASOS shortstop Capt. Dave Kelley, who anchored a tough defensive infield. “We were in third place coming into this game and hopefully we can either stay in third or move up to second. Also with an exercise coming up, we’ve got pick up as many wins now, before we move on to the exercise.”
Against the Divers, the 25 ASOS broke out on top quickly by posting five runs on six hits in the top of the first inning.
Kelley singled in his first at-bat, while teammates Capt. Rob Montgomery sliced a two-run double and pitcher Tech. Sgt. Timothy Evans drove in the fifth run of the frame with a single.
While the bats came alive right from the start for the 25 ASOS, Evans was tossing a gem versus the Divers by posting three straight shutout innings.
After giving up back-to-back singles to the Divers to open the bottom of the first, Evans settled down and retired the next nine batters in a row to help the 25 ASOS build up an 8-0 lead going into the bottom of the fourth.
Evans said that being around the strike zone and adjusting his throws to the stance of each hitter were the keys to his success.
“I was taught to pitch to their feet,” Evans explained. “Basically, how someone sets up, if their toes are in, or whatever it is, I pitch to their feet and nine out of 10 times, if I do it correctly, I end up with pop balls. I think we had seven pop balls in three innings.”
The Divers finally broke the drought when Navy Diver 2nd Class Sean Soblin stroked a tworun triple with two outs to narrow the margin down to six at 8-2.
However, the 25 ASOS responded immediately with four runs in the top of the fifth to put the game safely away.
Montgomery chipped in with a two-out, two-run single in the decisive inning.
Later, an inside-the-park homer by Navy Diver 2nd Class P.J. O’Dell tallied the game’s final run.
In the nightcap against the 647 CES, the 25 ASOS broke out the bats early once again and grabbed the lead in the first inning on a three-run shot over the left-field fence by Staff Sgt. Kenneth Bartle.
The 25 ASOS doubled their lead to 6-0 by scoring three more times in the top of the third, but momentum swung to the 647 CES, which got two runs in the bottom of the third.
Then after cutting the lead in half with a run in the fourth, the 647 CES came from behind to surprise the 25 ASOS with five runs in the bottom of the sixth and an 8-6 advantage.
Faced with their first uphill climb of the night, the 25 ASOS started off their final at-bat with back-to-back singles.
One out later, Evans sliced a single to cut the lead down to one before Capt. Chris Young tapped another hit to drive in Bartle with the tying run.
Staff Sgt. Charon Chavious followed with a blooper into center field for two more runs and the lead and was followed by Capt. Time Swierzbin, who knocked a two-out single for two more runs and finalized the rally with a 13-8 lead.
Although Evans started off the bottom of the seventh by walking the first 647 CES batter, he came back to induce a fly out before Kelley sealed the game with a double play.
“We were in a great spot in our lineup,” said Kelley about the team’s impressive seven-run seventh. “We had some of our best hitters coming up right at the end of the game. So being down two runs, we were pretty confident going into the last inning that we could at least pick up two runs. Tying the game was all we were hoping for, but we broke it open with the bottom of the lineup.”
Following the double win, Evans said that the victories not only kept the team in the hunt for a pennant, but also shows that the 25 ASOS belongs among the best in the league.
“I think we could actually give some of the best teams a run now,” said Evans, who added that hitting is the key. “Keeping our bats alive. The first two innings of that last game, we didn’t do a whole lot, and so we didn’t score a whole lot. Then out of nowhere, we started making solid contact, nice flat hits, and everything worked out well.”