BETHESDA—On June 6, the 1-0 Bethesda Big Train had their home opener at Shirley Povich Field against the 0-2 Alexandria Aces.
It was not even close as the Big Train took care of business by shutting out the Aces by the score of 8-0. On the following day, the game was ruled a no-hitter in favor of the pitching duo of Dalton Ponce and Jack Weeks.
Right off the bat, Bethesda took control of the game when catcher Jacob Southern hit a three-run home run to deep left field to put his team up 3-0 in the bottom of the first.
“I feel pretty good about it,” said Southern. “Felt good off the bat.”
In the bottom of the second, shortstop Gio Diaz singled to drive in Darius Foster and Anthony Piccolino, before getting caught in a rundown for the out. Nonetheless, the Big Train still led 5-0.
Two innings later, third baseman Drew Hamrock hit a bloop single to right field that sent Southern home to extend Bethesda’s lead to 6-0.
“I had two strikes on me,” said Hamrock. “But I just knew to put something in play, got the ball to go my way, got to bring in a run.”
The Big Train added two more runs in the sixth and eighth innings, respectively. First, first baseman Matt Thomas got hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, leading to designated hitter Ryan Daugherty’s scoring.
Later on, Daugherty scored once again after a Diaz hit. However, it resulted in a 6-4-3 double play against the Big Train, limiting the scoring to just eight runs.
On the mound, Ponce went six innings and struck out 10 Alexandria batters, while Weeks finished the game off in the last three innings, striking out three. For Southern, it was important during his postgame comments to give credit where it is due.
“Our pitching staff, definitely,” said Southern. “It’s good to get runs early, but our pitching staff dominated.”
Both Southern and Hamrock said they were impressed with the Big Train’s 8-0 win over the Aces. They both hope their positive momentum continues throughout the season.
“This is what the whole season is going to look like,” said Southern.
“I think we’re rolling,” said Hamrock. “I think our team feels pretty good. I think we’ve got a lot of good chemistry, and I think we can keep it going.”