Codgers win home run derby against CB faculty
Del Webb turns out for good cause, memorable game
Del Webb and Cane Bay fans were treated to a late autumn fireworks show Sunday at Cobra Park as the DW Codgers bested the CBHS Faculty team, 24-11, in a slugfest softball game that featured 14 home runs.
The Veterans Day celebration began with the DW Veterans Club, represented by Kjell Ring and Marty Ryan, presenting colors for the National Anthem, performed ably by the Singing Marine, Dennis Morrill.
Once the ceremonies were concluded though, it was an all-out ambush. Mike Brown legged out an infield hit to start the first inning, and Ken Martinelli followed with a single through the right side for the visiting Codgers. Eric Walke then promptly deposited CB pitcher Shane Todd’s next offering over the left center field fence for a three-run lead. The Codgers plated two more on four straight hits, and the shell-shocked faculty got off the field by rule, five runs down and without registering a put out.
Codgers’ starter Rich Geismar got three quick outs after a leadoff single in the home half, and the Codgers poured on five more in the second on six hits, a walk, and an inning-ending homer by Eric Walke.
Geismar put the Teachers down one-two-three in the second. The onslaught continued in the top of the third with yet another five-runs coming across for the Codgers, capped by home runs from Phil Fimiani and Dave England. Geismar pitched around a single in the third, and the Codgers led to start the fourth inning by an astonishing margin of 15-0.
That lead jumped to 20-0 when the Codgers reached their season’s highlight with three consecutive home runs from Eric Walke, Phil Fimiani, and Rich Geismar; then ended with Tom Fieldstead’s blast for an unprecedented four-homer inning.
The bookies in Vegas had closed up shop and left town by the time the Faculty got on the scoreboard in the home half of the fourth. Pitcher Darryl Rice relieved Rich Geismar and surrendered a pair of solo homers to Shane Todd and Carrie Hudson after two were out. The Codgers stretched the lead with four more in the top of the fifth, with Ken Martinelli’s home run closing out the scoring for the visitors.
But having broken through against Rice in the fourth, the Faculty came up swinging in the fifth. Two walks and a single loaded the bases with none out, followed by RBI singles by Jeff Whisenhunt and Sara Guthrie. Shane Todd then unloaded his second home run, and the Teachers had four more runs on the board.
Whisenhunt, now pitching effectively in relief of Todd, kept the Codgers from scoring in the sixth for the first time all game. Codgers’ closer Paul Farkas came on in the home half of the sixth and was greeted by three straight hits, the last a run-scoring double from Frank Guthrie. Farkas got the next two outs, but Sara Guthrie got a clutch RBI single to extend the inning, and Shane Todd made the Codgers pay with his third straight home run, this a three-run bomb to retire the side by rule.
The Faculty had outscored the Codgers 11-4 in the last two innings, and had gamely closed the gap to 24-11 entering the final frame. Again Whisenhunt retired the Codgers without surrendering a run, and the Faculty came to bat in the “all you can get” home seventh looking for 13 runs to tie. But Codgers starter Rich Geismar had returned to the mound to nail down his own lead after seeing a shaky Codger bullpen get rattled in the last two innings. Still, the resilient faculty had the bases loaded with one out when hot-hitting Susan Pitchor laced a rocket down the third base line that Eric Walke was able to knock down, step on third for a force and throw home to cut down Sherrie Norris for a game ending double play.
It was an entertaining day for all, paced along by the banter of PA announcer and emcee Ross Baglio, his CBHS color commentator Joey Wade, and the musical interludes and commentary from Bob Hayes.
But the day wasn’t about winning or losing, or even a softball game. It was about turning out for a good cause and spurring community support for needy families. Each year CBHS organizes a food drive around Thanksgiving time and hosts a Community Fair to distribute the bounty donated by the Cane Bay family of communities. This year, Del Webb Charleston hoped to enhance the Nov. 17 Community Fair by staging a high profile exhibition softball game against the CBHS Faculty and collect food and dry goods donations as “admission” to the benefit game.
And once again Del Webbers turned out in great support for a worthwhile event. CBHS food collections at the gate surpassed expectations. Thanks in part to the generosity of Del Webb patrons, Cane Bay High School is positioned to make the 2012 Community Fair its best ever, and continue its commendable work in our community.