VFW tightens ‘D,’ wins twice

by Tom Coombe
Better defense and an improved performance at the plate led to a pair of victories for Ely’s VFW baseball team.
Post 2717 recorded splits in its last two twinbills, with Harry Simons’ bases-loaded single plating the winning run in a 7-6, second-game win over Cherry Tuesday night at Veterans Memorial Field.
In the opener, Ely fell 6-2 despite a strong pitching performance from Jacob Towley, who notched 10 strikeouts.
Five days earlier, Ely split two games with Esko, with Erron Anderson ripping three hits and Eddie Prijatel recording eight strikeouts in a 14-6 win. Esko took the nightcap 9-4.
Ely took a 3-6 record into Friday night’s matchup at Virginia and will host Proctor in a 5 p.m. doubleheader on Monday.
Early in the season, defense cost Ely in several defeats but progress was evident this week.
Post 2717 also revved up its bats in Proctor, site of the July 9 contests with Esko.
Anderson led the way with three hits, including three runs batted in and a two-run triple, while Joey Bianco had two hits incluidng a two-run triple.
Mason Davis had two hits and two runs batted in, Towley had two hits including a double, Prijatel chipped in with two hits and Jackson Levens had a two-run double.
That was more than enough support for Prijatel, who went the distance allowing five hits and striking out eight.
Towley gave up only two hits in the nightcap, but he walked nine and there were several Ely errors.
Anderson had two hits in the defeat, as did Iver Lepisto.
Towley was on the short end of a pitchers’ duel with Cherry’s Jude Sundquist Tuesday.
Cherry scored two unearned runs in the top of the seventh to put the game away.
Bianco, Anderson and Logan Loe had Ely’s only hits.
Davis started on the mound and went four-and-one-third innings in the second game with Cherry. The righthander struck out six and gave up three hits. Prijatel came on with one out in the fifth and ended up with the win on the hill.
Prijatel helped his own cause with a hot bat, getting three hits with three runs batted in including a two-run double.
Bianco, Simons, Davis and Loe had two hits each and Levens added a two-run single.