In the midst of their stretch of four home games in four days, the 18-12 Lincoln Potters took on the West Coast Kings’ black roster in a non-league game on Friday night. Their last matchup with the Kings’ black roster came on June 23 in a game where Payton Brennan (UCLA) powered the Potters to a 13-2 win behind two home runs.
Craig Schmich (Minot State University) made his first start of the season after joining the team just a few days earlier. Schmich, the Potters’ oldest player, was a member of the 2017 team that restarted the Potters’ history.
Schmich wasn’t the only guy making his debut that night, however. Garret Forrester (Oregon State University) made his first start behind the plate and Reuben Church (University of Kentucky) debuted at first base.
Schmich got off to a hot start on the mound, striking out three in the first without allowing a run. He struck out 55 batters in 49⅔ innings last season at Minot State in North Dakota.
With Garret Forrester watching from the on-deck circle, preparing to take his first at-bat with the Potters that season, his little brother, Brandon (Oregon State University) hit his first home run of the season to break the scoreless tie. Garret followed it up with a walk and was later driven in by Reuben Church in his first at-bat with the Potters. The Potters lead by five at the end of the first.
Brandon Forrester stayed hot in the second, driving in another run before scoring alongside his brother on a Payton Brennan RBI single. Six different Potters scored runs in the first two innings, jumping out to an early eight-run lead.
Schmich retired the side one more time in the third before being replaced by the Potters’ leader in bullpen innings, Gabe Maya (Loyola Marymount University) in the fourth. Maya allowed two runs, but the Potters still lead by seven after Reuben Church drove in another run in the bottom of the inning.
Maya allowed another run in the fifth before Max Manning (UC Davis) pitched the penultimate sixth inning, registering a season-high three strikeouts in a scoreless inning of work. The Potters’ bats also cooled off significantly as they posted nine of their twelve hits in the first two innings of play.
Arthur Steinkamp (University of New Mexico) was the final Potter to make his debut in the game, as he was trusted to make the final three outs with a six-run lead. The Potters defeated the Kings by a final score of 9-3 in seven innings of play.
With two more home games this weekend with the non-league Menlo Park Legends, the Potters will be back at the Bean on Saturday night for game one of the two-game set.
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