Portola’s Connor Kennedy slides into third before Quincy’s Kyle Froggatt has a chance to tag him out. The two teams started their seasons last Friday with a rivalry game against one another. Photos by James Wilson
The sound of a bat cracking against the ball means one thing; baseball season has started. Portola, Quincy and Chester all started the season March 8 at the Glenn Cox Baseball Tournament at Los Molinos High School.
All three teams played three games. Chester took on Fall River early Friday morning to lose its first game 3-1. Immediately afterward, Quincy took down its rival Portola 8-6 in a game that got down to the wire.
Quincy went on to get shut down 9-0 by Fall River and then beat Princeton 11-0. Portola took down Chester 11-2 and Biggs 13-1. After losing to Portola, Chester won its last game of the tournament 15-3 against Los Molinos.
The Plumas teams were obviously working out their kinks during the tournament. None of the three Plumas teams have been able to practice outside, and Friday’s games were the first time they actually played on a field this year.
“It was the first set of games this season, so it was a little tough,” said Quincy’s coach Bob Hatzell. “There were a lot of bright spots, though. I thought we hit the ball pretty well. Our pitching seemed pretty good as well.”
Kyle Froggatt pitched the majority of the Trojan’s game against Princeton for a shutout. Froggatt had eight strikeouts to start his season off well.
Portola’s coach Tim Brubaker made sure his team stayed well energized throughout the tournament. Brubaker utilized seven pitchers in all during the three games, not allowing anyone to throw more than 55 pitches.
“All in all I thought it went okay,” said Brubaker. “We still have a ways to go this season, though. I was pleased with our pitching and thought we got better approaches at the plate as the games progressed.”
Ricky Lowdermilk through Portola’s first pitch of the season against the Trojans. Lowdermilk also did great at bat in Portola’s game against Biggs, getting five RBIs.
Though Chester lost two of its games last weekend, the Volcanoes’ coach Terry Hernandez thinks his team has a good shot.
“I’m very optimistic about this season,” said Hernandez. “I was even pleased with our game against Fall River. They’re one of the toughest teams in the area and we held our own with them. We showed what we can do in our game against Los Molinos, I fell. We were able to put the bat on the ball.”
Hernandez awarded Cole Conner All Tourney for his batting ability. Conner consistently hit the ball and moved his teammates along.
Chester returns to Los Molinos on March 15 for a league game. The Volcanoes first home game is against Quincy on March 20 at 3:30 p.m. Quincy has no other games before that. Portola travels to Virginia City on March 15 and to North Tahoe