Maybe it was the shoes.
Sporting his new cleats, Matthew McNease led the Misfits to a 10-5 win over the Trash Pandas, June 25 at NASA softball field 2. The teams play in the coed Redstone Division.
McNease batted leadoff and went 2-for-3 with two doubles and two runs scored. He sparked the defense with an unassisted double play in the top of the fifth. The bases were loaded and one out when he caught a sinking line drive just off the infield dirt and stepped on second base to end the inning.
“Team effort,” McNease said. “It was team spirit and everybody put a good effort and we worked together.
“And I got new cleats and that really helped me out today.”
Number 24 in the maroon jersey wore his new fuchsia cleats and a white baseball cap turned backward. He played basketball and golf at Marina High School in Huntington Beach, California, from 1999-2003.
Jeremy Tillman, Ben Copeland, Vince Ongjoco and Brian Stehle added two hits apiece for the Misfits (2-6). Winning pitcher Stehle allowed five runs, one earned, on nine hits in seven innings. He had five strikeouts and five walks.
“We had a really good turnout tonight,” player/coach Kelly Sledgeister-Stehle said. “We were evenly matched and we played hard. The Misfits are glad to have their second win.”
Derek Santiago went 3-for-3 with a double and scored twice for the Trash Pandas (2-5). Joey Adinolfi and Joe Longino had two hits apiece. Michael Yates pitched the first three innings and took the loss. Crystal Santiago pitched the last three.
“Currently my team is on a batting slump,” Trash Pandas coach Carlos Gomez said. “We need to practice hitting in the hole and stop hitting popups. Our defense is great. Our defense has improved and it’s good. We did better with our relief pitcher (Crystal Santiago).”