A stalling offense dooms Darlington on the road
By Drake Horton
A lack of offense and a three-run sixth inning were too much for Darlington Post 13, as it dropped its third straight game of the young season as Chesterfield defeated Post 13 5-1 June 3 on the road at Chesterfield.
“Chesterfield is a well-coached team over there; they really barrel up everything,” Darlington head coach Joe Kolodziej said. “It seemed like everything we threw today, it didn’t matter if it was fast ball, curve or change, they were barreling it and we were able to get in front of some of it, but others we weren’t and they fell in. Hats off them, they weren’t shy, they were aggressive in the counts, they were aggressive in every count and we weren’t ready for that.”
Darlington started the game off right as Karson Norris blasted a solo shot over the left-center wall, but that start did not result in any more offensive production as Post 13 was unable to score any more runs for the rest of the game.
“A little inexperience out there, guys getting a taste of varsity pitching and from there we need to get our sea legs and get our momentum going again,” Kolodziej said.
That inexperience should correct itself over time, but facing pitching like it did against Chesterfield is how Darlington is going to get better, because according to Kolodziej, before this game, most of the players on Post 13 had not even seen pitching like this before.
“It’s more of just getting our hands ready, getting ready, getting in a loaded position before they go up and fire the hands out. Everything becomes a little bit faster, the curve ball is a little bit faster; they really don’t hang as much as in JV. The changeups and other pitches, they come into play. The kid tonight threw a really good slider; some of these guys haven’t even seen a slider, and we looked like it was our first time seeing it.”
The 1-0 lead was short-lived for Darlington as Chesterfield answered in the bottom half of the first inning after an errant throw to third allowed the Chesterfield runner to round third and score.
For the next three innings, both starting pitchers kept each offense at bay as the game stayed tied at one through four. In the fifth, however, Chesterfield struck again after a misread on a fly ball resulted in a two-out RBI double that game them the lead for good.
Up by one, Chesterfield added insurance in the sixth, scoring three more runs off of an RBI sacrifice fly, a ground rule double and another error.
Darlington went one, two, three in the seventh to end to the game.
Darlington was scheduled to play two more games this past week, but its rematch against Chesterfield was canceled because of weather. In the other game, however, Darlington lost to South Florence Blue at home 10-4 on June 4. Post 13’s record is now 1-4 overall.