Franklin shines in Alcona baseball win

LINCOLNThe Alcona boys baseball team came out strong in its first full game of the season on Wednesday, especially Cody Franklin who threw a one-hitter in a 2-0 win that saw him going toe-to-toe with Whittemore-Prescott’s Tyler Janish in a furious pitchers battle.

“Cody pitched great tonight and we also had some great defense tonight that really helped him out big time,” Alcona coach Terry Franklin said.

Franklin struck out 14 of the 23 batters he faced, threw out two and also gave up two walks in a standout game.

Janis was impressive too, striking out 12 and only walking two.

The first two innings were basically an extended stand off between pitchers, with each hoping the other would blink first.

In the third inning, Janish blinked.

He collected seven strikeouts in eight outs in the first three innings and had only given up one hit at that point. With two outs, Franklin came to the bat and hit a single. He then stole second base and Jared Steiner and Trenton Lavergne both drew walks.

Franklin then stole home base on a wild pitch, while Steiner stole third. Nathan Fettes then came up and drove in Steiner with a single.

Although, Janish struck out the next batter the damage was done.

The Tigers had five hits in the game including one apiece from Fettes, Chad Cole and LaVergne.

Alcona did get into some trouble late in the fifth after Ivan Lauria walked and then stole two bases to sit in scoring position. Mike Ardnt then hit a ball into right field that Joe Hudgins and Carson Jamieson were able to field to get Ardnt out at first and prevent any scoring opportunities.

“I thought we did a lot of things really well tonight. We’re coming off a good off-season where we did a lot of work to fix a lot of problems and I think it really showed through in that first game,” Terry Franklin said.

The second game saw Fettes as Alcona’s pitcher and Lauria as Whittemore’s. Lauria ran into some trouble right away, giving up a single to Franklin who then stole two bases to get into perfect scoring position and was later driven in by a Steiner single.

After LaVergne picked up an out from a center field catch by Jose Rodriguez, Fettes drew a walk and then stole a base. Chad Cole then hit a single. Wild pitching from Lauria helped Fettes get home while Cole stole his way to third, giving Alcona a 3-0 lead.

Part of the problem with the second game was the hail and rain that made the ball slippery and hard to control.

The second inning was similarly successful for Alcona with solid hitting and three runs due to a walk by Joe Carasco and a double by Austin Cole that turned into runs after steals and continued trouble in the bullpen for Whittemore.

Franklin knocked in Cole with a triple to earn an RBI and was able to steal home off of another wild pitch. By the time the inning was over, Alcona had done a lot of damage and was up 6-0.

Whittemore was able to knock in a run of its own, but the rain and cold made it unbearable to play and the game was suspended after the top of the fourth in a game that showed a lot of potential for Alcona, including the solid pitching of Fettes, who picked up three strikeouts by the end of the game.

“It all comes down to the hard work we did in the off-season. It’s really got us ready to go and these games are perfect examples of that,” Terry Franklin said.