The American Legion Post 20 Twins swept Post 28 Service Cougars in a doubleheader Saturday at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai.
The Twins topped Service 7-0 in the first game, off the strength of a five-run seventh inning. In the second game of the day, one which was cut short to four innings due to time limits, the Twins downed the Cougars 7-3. The Twins are now 1-1 in the league and 3-1 overall.
With a scoreless tie going into the bottom of the sixth inning, Post 20 began to find its rhythm, scoring a run from AJ Hull when Josiah Covey knocked out a single.
“We should’ve scored a run in the first inning, but that was just a bad call,” Twins coach Gary Oliver said, referring to a controversial call that put Jake Darrow out at third. “It’s early in the year for them, too.”
Kenai really found some magic in the seventh inning, scoring five runs to take a dominant 6-0 lead.
“We started hitting the ball,” Oliver said. “Our first two guys got a base hit, and (Service) walked our next guy, and our fourth guy had three RBIs.
“That’s our hitting. The bats finally woke up.”
Robert Cockrell and Max Hegge both had singles and Justin Wisnewski walked to load the bases up, and all three scored off of a double from Darrow.
Hull scored his second run of the day off of a sacrifice fly from Covey to complete the seventh-inning scoring.
Cockrell completed the game with a run off a triple from Darrow in the eighth inning.
Oliver attributed the scoring to the pure speed of the team.
“Our guys can make plays happen by stealing bases and running,” he said. “Our speed combined with our versatility make us hard to beat sometimes.”
Oliver said Darrow received the game ball, which is an award the Twins give out in every game to one player.
Darrow was 3 for 5, including a double, triple and four RBI.
Hull went 2 for 4 with a triple, one RBI and two runs, and Cockrell went 2 for 4 with two runs.
The Twins’ Brandon Mahle, from Kodiak, pitched 4 1-3 innings and recorded two strikeouts, while Service’s Johnny Meszaros struck out three players.
In a reversal of the day’s first game, much of the scoring was done early in the second game, as Service led 3-0 after its turn in the first inning, but the Twins came roaring back with five runs.
Hull, Covey, Shayne Miller and Tay Harling each had an RBI, in addition to a pitching error that allowed the Twins to score.
“The second game we let some other guys play, and it feels good,” Oliver said. “With practice the other night, it allows our guys to get some rest, and let someone else get in.
“We feel good about getting two wins, but we still don’t have all our guys together, because of other commitments.”
The Twins scored two more in the fourth, helped by a second error by Service’s first baseman.
Hull ended up hitting 2 for 3 with two RBI, and Cockrell hit both times he batted.
Dallas Pierren, Max Hegge and Mitchell Daugharty all pitched for the Twins, giving up only four hits collectively.
“It’s definitely a good result for the first game after the first week of practice, with everyone here, and for that early in the season, I think they played pretty well,” Oliver said.