BY WENDI REARDON PRICE
Clarkston News Sports Writer
The Wolves took to the diamond on Saturday to honor Ryan Kennedy.
“It was awesome,” said Clarkston Varsity Baseball Head Coach Jake Arendsen, who played for Oakland University when the team adopted Kennedy as a team member before he passed away in 2012.
“It was great to have Ryan’s family there and have his older brother, Nate, throw out the first pitch. It was a great tribute to Ryan and what he means to the community. I thank the boys and families for being a part of that and representing the Clarkston Baseball program as a way to honor Ryan and what he has meant to us.”
The Wolves finished the day splitting the double header with Croswell-Lexington. They lost the first game in eight innings after their opponents scored two runs at the top of the eighth inning, making the score 5-3.
“We had some errors that cost us runs late in the game,” Arendsen said.
They won the second game 3-2 after Jack Anderson connected with a walkoff double in the ninth inning.
“It was nice to end Saturday on a winning note,” said Arendsen. “We did what we wanted to do.”
He added they brought two freshmen up from the JV team for the game and one of them, Brady Krzciok had his first varsity career hit.
“He gave us a spark,” Arendsen said. “It scored a run which was contagious for us. It’s nice to see a young batter get a good RBI for us.”
With playoffs starting in a few weeks, the extra innings will help the team prepare.
“We talked about we went through the dog days of May – the long month before playoffs as we are clawing for a chance for a league title,” Arendsen said. “As we move into the next week and one more week of non-conference play, we are going to find out how much we have left in the tank. The boys have played good baseball. We have lost six games by two or fewer runs.”
The boys play Stoney Creek this week, who is the top of the league, with the Wolves still holding a shot at the league title.
“It will be close games and we have told the boys our league games are close,” Arendsen said. “Close games have been the story of our season, leaving runners left on base. The boys are doing a nice job of competing and they are real close to clicking on all cylinders.The boys know we have to play good baseball and we have to be error free. It starts with the pitchers on the mound getting ahead on the counts. Then, depositing the runners we have on base. We have a nice way of getting on base. We need the big hits to score those runs.”
The Wolves overall record is 12-9, without counting the suspended game against Rochester Adams. They lost two games in their 3-game series against Rochester last week.
They lost to the Falcons on May 6, 9-0, then defeated them on Wednesday, 2-1.
Cole Donchez pitched a no-hitter going into the seventh inning before he gave up two hits. He had seven strikeouts during the game.
“It was probably the best game I have ever seen Cole pitch,” Arendsen added. “Cole was working ahead on the count and letting defense do the work.”
They lost to Rochester on Thursday, 6-1.
Clarkston hosts Chippewa Valley on Friday with the first pitch at 4:30 p.m.