Glenwood baseball sweeps Summit in 4A WSL battle
Post Independent Contributor
Sophomore Wheatley Nieslanik pitched a complete game shutout to give the Glenwood Demons a 10-0 win in game No. 1 of a Friday afternoon doubleheader against the Summit Tigers at the Glenwood Middle School field, and junior Sam Fitzwilliams turned in three innings of masterful pitching in relief of Chano Gonzales to help Glenwood hold on to a 9-6 win in the second game to complete the Western Slope League sweep.
“Wheatley threw lots of strikes today. He only walked one batter,” said Glenwood Head Coach Eric Nieslanik. “We swung the bats really well and played some good defense in that first game.”
With game number one only lasting five innings due to the 10-run mercy rule, Glenwood handed the ball to Gonzalez on the mound to help guide them to the sweep in the day’s second contest.
Cruising along with a 5-2 lead in the fourth inning, Gonzalez and the Demons encountered some turbulence on a rainy and windswept late afternoon. Loading the bases with a pair of walks to Summit batsmen, Gonzalez gave way to Fitzwilliams on the mound to help preserve the Glenwood lead.
Summit would tie the game at 5-5 as junior Koa Rashidi would tag Fitzwilliams for a single following a fly out by Magnus Crone. Two more Summit runs would cross the plate on a walk issued by Fitzwilliams and a passed ball that slipped through the grasp of Demon catcher Kai Kanzer.
Glenwood quickly dashed the comeback hopes of Summit as the Demons put up two runs in their half of the fifth inning. Senor Dylan Lee ended up on second base on an infield single and a Summit throwing error.
Fitzwilliams was issued a walk by Tiger pitcher Andrew Reynolds. Both Glenwood base runners ended up making it all the way to home plate on wild pitches by Reynolds, as the Demons took the lead in the game for good.
The Demons added to their lead in the sixth inning. Senior Ryan Welsh was issued a walk to start things off.
Junior Ashlan Stolley then smacked a double to left field to advance Welsh to third base. Gonzalez hit a sacrifice fly to score Welsh and give Glenwood an 8-5 advantage.
With Fitzwilliams settling into a groove on the mound and blanking the Tigers in the fifth and sixth innings, Glenwood, the visiting team on the scoreboard in the second game of the doubleheader, got more run support in their final at bat.
Fitzwilliams hit a double to right field, but he didn’t have to wait long on second base as Kanzer roped a double of his own to left, scoring his teammate from second to put the Demons up 9-5.
Summit garnered a final run in the bottom of the seventh, but Fitzwilliams struck out Summit’s Marcus Popoff on a nice changeup to retire the side and send Glenwood to victory.
“It’s nice to get the two wins in these tough conditions. We’re right there as a team and we are competing,” said Nieslanik following game number two. “Sam (Fitzwilliams) really came into a tough spot out there and he did a fantastic job for us.”
Glenwood (10-7, 6-1 WSL) will be back in action at home Monday when they will host Eagle Valley.
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