The Spartans were officially ruled out of the playoffs for yet another season as they push their record to 2-10. After two promising victories over Antietam and single a powerhouse Schuykill Haven. The Spartans beat Antietam 4-0 and were looking forward to prove themselves in the coming games. After a hard fought, ten inning win over Schuykill Haven, Wyomissing was rapidly gaining confidence for a playoff push. That all changed as they traveled to Hamburg to try and continue the win streak. Hamburg opted not to pitch their ace, Luke Erb, and the Spartans looked to take advantage of the possible weak link on the mound. The game proved the time tested adage “defense wins championships” as the Spartans had difficulty fielding the ball behind Brian Bamberger, eventually losing the game in six innings. The Spartans then met with Brandywine Heights, trying to bounce back and begin a new winning streak. The Spartans could not handle Brandywine either as they fell 13-1, dropping their record to 2-8 and forcing the impending post-season exclusion into the minds of the coaches, players, and fans. As a possible last effort, Wyomissing traveled to Schuykill Valley, heads held high, for one last shot at the playoffs. Sean Smith started strong for the Spartans as they jumped out to a 3-0 lead early. Things soon changed as Smith gave up two-run homerun to put Schukyill Valley within one. After adding another run to their lead, Wyomissing took the field and watch two more solo homeruns soar over the fence. In the end the Panthers were too much for the Spartans, as they fell once more 5-3. Although they already knew they would no longer have a shot at the post-season, Wyomissing again took the field against a very good Trinity squad. Despite a strong showing on the mound from Brian Bamberger, the Spartans lost their tenth game of the year 10-4 as errors once more dominated the Spartan infield. Wyomissing must now wait until next year for another shot at playoffs, as they have now been mathematically eliminated. All they can hope for now is a few more wins for pride. Let’s hope they add a few in the win column before seasons end.
The Spartans have have had four games now and are already 0-4. Wyomissing is showing alot of difficulty at the plate, with many games ending in double digit strikeouts. This display coupled with the errors in the field is adding up to some bad baseball for the Spartans, who need to turn it around or they could end up like the infamous 2009 Spartan team that lost every game. Wyomissing faced the likes of Tulpehocken, Tri-Valley, Kutztown, and Conrad Weiser in this four game losing streak, and each one of them crushed the hopes of a first win for the Spartans. Tulpehocken, the season opener for Wyomissing, hosted a close game, ending 5-3 in a Tulpehocken victory. Wyomissing tipped their caps to the Trojans and were ready to come out swinging against a mysterious foe in Tri-Valley. Tri-Valley posed a threat to the Spartans. Although it was a non-league game, Wyomissing had never seen Tri-Valley before, and had no idea what was in store for them. Coach Bob Wolfrum sent Tom Dennis out on the mound and he immediately saw trouble. After an error by shortstop Matt Perez, Dennis walked a batter and saw a ball fly over his outfielder’s head to the fence. This seemed to be a trend that followed the Spartans, as Tri-Valley had a few hitters that really keyed on Wyomissing’s pitching, smacking a couple more triples before the day was through. This two-loss start still did not dampen the Spartans’ spirits. They came out Friday against a Kutztown team that is poised to be the division champion this season, ready to dethrone the preemptively crowned “King of Berks 4”. Andrew Gernert had other plans, however, as the Cougars best pitcher threw a nice game and the Spartans, faced with more outfield errors, could not overcome the adversity, losing 7-0. The final game of this skid was played early Saturday, after rain had fallen the night before. At Conrad Weiser, Wyomissing looked to gain their first win against a very good Scout program. The course of the game took its toll on both teams but after a hard-fought game, the Scouts came out victorious 8-6, leaving the Spartans to think over their Spring Break of what they can do to turn this season around before it becomes another devastating outing of Spartan Baseball.
The Spartans started off their year with a preseason scrimmage against one of Berks County’s premier programs, Governor Mifflin. The Spartans had high hopes coming into this scrimmage, with new faces, Corey Unger and Brian Williams appearing in the outfield. The scrimmage did not go how Wyomissing had hoped, however. Governor Mifflin’s star pitcher Matt Swarmer had a nice outing for the Mustangs, as did Tanner DeLucia. The Spartans were seemingly in the game until they began missing routine fly balls. Mifflin matched Wyomissing error for error for awhile, but eventually, the Mustangs were too much for the Spartans and they went down in a tough spring loss. The Spartans look to bounce back in their second and final scrimmage against Pottstown, in hopes to a playoff capped season.
There have been many changes in Wyomissing baseball in the pat couple of years, but this year sees some big transitions. Two new outfielders come out for Spartans, one from Fleetwood and one from North Carolina. Corey Unger, who many know as the Fleetwood starting Quarterback, has moved to Wyomissing and, in the midst of his football trial, started playing baseball for the Spartans. Corey is a very athletic young man with great potential that he hopes to convert into big plays on the field. He joins Juniors Brian Bamberger and Causa in the outfield this year. Justin has been a Spartan for many years now but has just recently transitioned to the outfield. He hopes he can mold well into the grass in right and help the Spartan club to many wins this year. The other new comer is Brian Williams from down south in North Carolina. He is really getting acquainted to Wyomissing baseball and he is the resident lefty on the team. He is also related to Brian and James Bamberger. These two new Spartans and this one veteran are looking to move the Spartans back into the “Best in Berks” talks once and for all. We’ll all see if they can do it this season. Watch out for these three.
This will be my last post of the 2011 season. The Spartans have no hope left to save their season. They are seemingly unmotivated and you have to wonder when the young guns will take control of the team. Earlier in the week, Coach Bob Wolfrum laid it all all for the Spartans, telling them that they still had small hopes for some sort of post-season if they won the rest of their games. After hearing this, the Spartans promptly went out and lost 10-0, putting the run rule into effect against Tulpehocken. The Spartans will have to wait until next year for playoff aspirations to come to fruition, when JV swag takes over the Varsity team. Also earlier in the week, the JV Spartans went out against Tulpehocken with some bad blood and the thought of their coach, Justin Moyer, walking off the field if they lost. They decided that was no option and proceeded to implement the run rule beating Tulpehocken 12-2 in 5 innings. One must think, what would’ve happened if the JV team played in place of the Varsity? We can be sure that they would have put up much more of a fight than the Varsity Spartans.
The Spartans have entered a pretty big rough patch at this point in the season and may not be able to recover after their latest loss. Wyomissing had 4 games scheduled in the past 5 days, and they lost them all. Despite solid outings from Dan Helinek and Tommy Dennis, the Spartans defense just could not make the plays when they saw the ball coming their way. After being run-ruled by both Hamburg and Kutztown, the Spartans traveled to Brandywine Heights and were again disappointed after a crushing defeat. On Wednesday, Bob Wolfrum’s Spartan squad went up against the Panthers of Schuylkill Valley, hoping to turn everything around. The Panthers had not done anything relatively impressive compared to the Spartans, and Wyomissing expected a pretty easy win. Things turned around quite quickly in the minds of the Spartans. With one out and a man on first Dan Helinek delivered home, a ball was ripped toward shortstop, Matt Perez gathered and, instead of flipping to Second Baseman Jay Rosario to start the inning-ending double play, tried to run it to the base. All runners were safe and the Panthers went on the score 5 runs in the next 2 innings. However, Wyomissing did fight back. They brought the lead to 1 late in the game, but once again their defense failed them. the Panthers scored another 3 runs and the game ended in agony for the Spartans. This could be the end of their season if they don’t pick their heads up.
Wyomissing – 4
Schuylkill Valley – 8
Wyomissing – 4
Holy Name – 3
The Spartans looked solid in their last game against the Blue Jays. They had a nice performance from Matt Perez at the plate, he went 2 for 3. Also, the Spartans top prospect coming into this season, TJ Kelly, got his first taste of the Wyomissing Outfield. He put on a performance that had him looking as if he had been there his whole life. Early on in a tied game (0-0), Kelly saw a ground ball roll up the middle. With the raucous and joyous shouts coming from the Blue Jays bench as the runner rounded third, Kelly snagged the ball and unleashed a bullet to the plate. His throw reached Nate Hertzog with time to spare. The Spartans went on to score in the bottom half of that inning. Kelly also had 2 RBI’s in the 4-3 win. Holy Name did receive a spark late in the game from Freddy Caruso. With John Bonino on the mound, after an empowering scream from the mound, Caruso worked a full count. With 2 outs and a runner on first while being down 4-1, Caruso had to make something happen. Bonino got ready to throw. His pitch of choice was a fastball, he just left it chest high over too much of the plate. Caruso sent the pitch flying the opposite way, to deep right center field and over the fence to bring the Jays within 1. This would be the end of the Jays offense, however, and the Spartans came away with a league victory. This is just a small step toward the big turn around for this season. With two of the Spartans games postponed this week, they have been trying to perfect some mistakes in the hitting room and they should be ready for Antietam. We’ll just have to wait and see.