Story and photos by Matt Decker
The U.S. Marine Corps Detachment proved why they are Fort Leonard Wood’s two-time defending softball champions Aug. 8 by dismantling the defense of the previously undefeated 94th Engineer Battalion on their way to a 19-6 victory.
The win helped the Marine Det. step into the lead of this year’s intramural standings, and likely set them up as the top seed of the upcoming Commander’s Cup Softball Tournament.
“This was a huge game,” said Deryl Stockton, Marine Det. player/coach. “I’ve got to give it to these guys — they’ve had a heck of a season this year.”
Both teams had led the 2018 intramural standings since the early part of the season, and, with only a few games remaining, entered the Aug. 8 contest with zero losses, the Marines holding seven regular-season wins and the 94th Engr. Bn. with 10.
They also seemed evenly matched early on, with both teams putting up two runs in the first inning, then trading one-run leads in each of their respective halves at bat in the second and third innings. The Marine Det. took a 7-5 lead in the top of the fourth inning on runs batted in by Andrew Heisinger and Danny Fisher, but the 94th stayed within one run on an RBI by James Davey.
Then the top of the fifth inning happened, and the Marines went on a 12-run tear. The rally started with two runs scored on a dropped ball. Robert Darby, Albert Camacho and Robert Speight each drove in a run, while Heisinger and Kyle Hancock each drove in two. But the highlight of the inning for the Marine Det. was a three-RBI triple by Stockton.
Needing to score three to stay alive under the mercy rule, the 94th Engr. Bn. batters attempted to hit big but ended up hitting high flies, and went down in order in the bottom of the fifth inning.
“Our defense was solid,” Stockton said. “We limited it to one or two errors — it was minimal. I told these guys back in March when we started getting together that defense wins championships.”
In other games played Aug. 8:
— The 14th Military Police Brigade defeated Company A, 554th Engineer Battalion, 12-10;
— Company B, 554th Engr. Bn. beat the 2nd Battalion, 10th Infantry Regiment, 16-10;
— Combat Training Company defeated the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence, 14-9;
— The Marine Det. and the 252nd/180th Military Police Detachment both picked up forfeit wins.
In games played Aug. 7:
— The 14th MP Bde. defeated the 1st Battalion, 48th Infantry Regiment, 13-1;
— The Marine Det. beat Co. A, 554th Engr. Bn., 22-1;
— MSCoE defeated the 252nd/180th MP Det., 13-12;
— The 31st Engineer Battalion picked up a forfeit win;
— Co. B, 554th Engr. Bn., beat CTC, 16-7;
— The 58th Transportation Battalion defeated the Medical Department Activity, 27-18.
In make-up games played Aug. 9:
— The 94th Engr. Bn. defeated the Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear School, 16-1;
— CTC picked up a forfeit win;
— The 252nd/180th MP Det. Beat the 31st Engr. Bn., 13-0;
— The Marine Det. defeated the 2-10th Inf. Bn., 32-3;
— Co. B, 554th Engr. Bn. beat CBRN, 16-3.
With one week of make-up games remaining, the Marine Det. is in first place with a season record of 13-0, followed by the 94th Engr. Bn. in second place at 13-1, the 14th MP Bde. in third at 11-3; Co. A, 554th Engr. Bn. in fourth with a record of 10-4 and MSCOE rounding out the top five teams of the 15-team conference with a record of 8-6.
The 2018 Recreation League wrapped up its final week of games Aug. 6. In those games:
— The Tank Automotive and Armaments Command defeated Black Horse, 12-4;
— The Sappers picked up a forfeit victory.
Not Forgotten had already clinched the lead of the Rec League standings the previous week with a record of 7-0. They are followed by CTC and the Sappers, both at 5-1. TACOM finished in fourth place with a record of 4-3; Black Horse took fifth with a record of 3-4. They were followed by the 50th Engr. Co. at 2-5, and Child and Youth Services and CBRN, both at 0-6.