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Schwarm's blast propels Post 95 to win vs. Granite City

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By Andrew Harner

VANDALIA – Austin Schwarm made his point in the grandest fashion last Wednesday.

A day after Vandalia Sr. Legion coach Mark Lewis told his team that he didn’t expect anyone to hit a home run during the summer, Schwarm connected for a grand slam to help lead Post 95 to an 8-5 win against Granite City.

Blasting the third pitch of his at-bat beyond the 335-foot marker in left-centerfield, Schwarm cleared the bases with two outs to give Vandalia what was then a 7-0 lead and force Lewis to reconsider the previous day’s thought.

“I think he did it to spite me,” Lewis said. “I told them after last night’s game that nobody on our team was going to hit a home run, so we needed to learn how to play small-ball.”

Without small-ball, however, Schwarm’s homer wouldn’t have brought in so many runs, as a pair of walks and a single led to the two-out longball.

For the game, Vandalia beat out three infield hits, stole three bases and laid down two sacrifice bunts, much to the delight of the coach.

“That’s been our emphasis so far this summer,” Lewis said. “I don’t think we will outhit too many teams.”

Post 95 did beat Granite City, 10-9, in terms of hits, but Granite City had just one infield hit, one steal and one sacrifice bunt in the game.

That ability to move runners – most of whom are speedy – is something that Vandalia will have to count on throughout the summer.

“Being able to have that weapon every time we are on base completely opens up all of our options,” Lewis said. “In the past, we’ve had a lot of sluggers, but we don’t have that this year.”

Vandalia showed off its speed from the get-go, with Kaiah Miller singling and stealing second in Post 95’s first at-bat.

He scored on an error committed during a bunt single by Austin Chausse.

After Raustin Zahradka reached on an error, Ian Kirk drove home two runs with a double to left.

Post 95 scored its final run of the game in the seventh when Zahradka doubled and scored on an error.

Granite City used a different pitcher in each the fifth-eighth innings, and Lewis said that it was beneficial to his squad.

“It keeps you focused,” Lewis said. “This was their first game, and it seemed like they brought in a better pitcher every time a new one came in.”

Tristan Wesselman picked up the victory for Vandalia, tossing six innings of relief and striking our four.

“He came up huge for us tonight,” Lewis said. “That outing gives our other guys a lot of rest, and kept us from bringing in fresh arms late in the game.”

Wednesday, June 5
Vandalia 8
Granite City 5
G: 0-0-4-0-0-1-0-0-0—5-9-3
V: 3-4-0-0-0-0-1-0-X—8-10-1
WP: Wesselman (1-1); 6 IP, 4 K
LP: Briggs (0-1); 2 IP, 1 K
Post 95: Schwarm, 1-for-2, HR, 4 RBI, run, sac bunt, BB; Zahradka, 2-for-5, 2B, 3 runs; Kirk, 2-for-3, 2B, 2 RBI, sac bunt; Miller, 1-for-4, run, 2 SB; Chausse, 1-for-5, run; Tyson Spencer, 1-for-2, 2B, run, 2 BB; Brock Trexler, 1-for-1; Lukas Hamlin, 1-for-3, SB; Tyler Herpstreith, run, 2 BB.
Record: 2-3