Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Skellchock, Schneider stepping up for Post 295

Tuesday, June 30, 2009
by James Peters Staff Writer for GAZZETTE.NET

Gaithersburg Post 295 has played with numerous key personnel absences for most of the American Legion baseball season. There has been "Beach Week," other vacations and the inclusion of players at both the Brooks Robinson High School All-Star game and on Team Maryland.

On top of that, left-handed pitcher Mike Ryan has come down with arm troubles that will keep him off the mound for a while.

Despite those losses, Post 295 continued to collect victories and remained in first place in the Montgomery Division with a 14-2 record through the weekend.

Post 295 manager Rick Price credits his team's depth for the sustained success, including a solid performance by Zach Skellchock, who has filled in just about everywhere, including behind the plate and on the mound.

"We have a lot of good people to step in," Price said. "That's the key. I think guys like Skellchock, he's played a lot of positions and pitched for us. He's hit for us. He's thrown a runner out at the plate [from the outfield] and Gary Schneider has pitched two games for us."

Skellchock, through Sunday, had produced a 2-0 record and a 1.70 earned-run average on the mound and was batting .333 with six runs batted in. Schneider, the team's top catcher, has dominated on the mound, going 1-0 with a 0.78 ERA and 18 strikeouts in nine innings. Schneider did not pitch for Georgetown Prep this past spring.

Gaithersburg has also been helped by the play of mainstays Nick Karis (.391, 14 RBI), Spencer Pearman (.370, 14 RBI) and Matt Civetti (.333, 11 RBI).

Post 295 will make its annual trip to New York this week for three games.

- If the playoffs started this week, the other three postseason squads would be Gaithersburg Post 104 (12-4), Sandy Spring Post 68 (8-4) and Cissel Saxon Post 41 (10-4, 8-4 Montgomery Division). Sandy Spring and Post 104 did not qualify for the playoffs last summer, while Damascus Post 171 (6-10) and Wheaton Post 268 (1-10) did.

Damascus and Wheaton resided in the cellar of the league through Sunday while Laurel Post 60, which has a strong offensive crew, was three games behind Cissel Saxon and Sandy Spring in the loss column at 9-7 in league play.

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