SL baseball takes care of unfinished business at Fruitport

Nic Bectel had a pair of smash hits during his clutch at-bat in the top of the 12th inning against rival Fruitport on Monday - the first unfortunate, the second thrilling. Bectel's darting liner to center field drove in the Lakers' go-ahead run in the completion of a suspended game between the Lakers and Trojans from May 17. Spring Lake would go on to chalk up two more runs in the inning, lifting the Lakers to an 11-8 victory that keeps them in contention for a Lakes Eight Conference title and all but eliminates the Trojans.
Nate Thompson
May 24, 2011


Earlier in his at-bat, Bectel hit a sharp liner foul that connected on the back window of a vehicle parked near-by, smashing it to bits. Turns out, the car belonged to Bectel’s grandparents.

Bectel shared some laughs with fellow Lakers’ fans who suggested he may not be receiving any birthday or Christmas presents from his grandparents any time soon.

“I know,” he said with sheepish grin.

A conference title may be a sweeter gift for Bectel, who, along with the rest of the Lakers (10-10-1, 8-2 Lakes Eight), must now root for Fruitport to take down Tri-County in a doubleheader on Friday. The Vikings currently hold a 1 1/2 game lead on Spring Lake in the Lakes Eight standings.

“This was huge because it keeps us in the conference conversation,” Bectel said. “Now we just have to worry about Fruitport beating Tri-County. We feel we’re sitting in a good spot right now.”

The Trojans (13-9, 6-4 Lakes Eight)) thought they were in a good spot in the bottom of the 10th, as they put their first two on with perfectly-executed bunt singles from John Sullivan and Zack Goldman. Mike Ryan followed with a sacrifice bunt that moved the runners to second and third.

For defensive purposes, Spring Lake coach Brian Sabo opted for an intentional walk to load the bases and face the Trojans’ Cody Bayle and then Kody Schultz.

The plan worked wonderfully thanks to Lakers’ senior pitcher Nick Keller, who buckled down and struck out both to get out of the inning unscathed.

“That was the biggest sting; to have the bases loaded and come up empty,” Fruitport coach Paul Masko said. “We’re at least a good enough team to put the ball in play and cause the opponent to make a play at the plate. But kudos to Keller. He kept on pumping strikes and did his job.”

To read more of this story, see today's print edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.


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