Coplay Legion needs a win
Just like their neighbors to the south, the Coplay Legion baseball team needs a win, something positive to get back on track heading into the final two weeks of the season.
Right now they're in the midst of a nine-game losing streak, but manager Jim Murphy still believes they can turn things around and mount a playoff charge. As with Fullerton, close games have been their Achilles heel. Five of those losses have been by a run. That was the case again Monday night when they lost to Southern Lehigh, 4-3.
"If we can get past that, we could still possibly turn it around," said Murphy.
In order to reach the playoffs, they'll have their work cut out for them since they currently sit in last place in the Lehigh Valley Legion Baseball League at 2-11. Coplay has five games remaining and the league takes the top eight teams. Still, Murphy is confident his team's work ethic can help them make a strong push.
"The kids are working hard," said Murphy. "They're playing hard, and they're keeping us in these games. We just need to get that one big run.
"The boys all come to play. We just keep getting snake bitten by one run."
Murphy said that pitching has been an issue all season, both starting and relief. He just doesn't have enough arms, and in its taken its toll. He's had to put players in roles they're not accustomed to during the year and that's led to some of their problems. They've also had to deal with some health issues that have hampered them as well.
Still, his team hasn't forfeited a single game, and have played well despite being shorthanded at times. He said he has a tough bunch of kids who scrap and claw until the last out.
"The boys keep it at one hundred percent, I can't complain," said Murphy.
Richard Yost leads the staff in wins with a 2-1 record, while posting a 2.21 ERA over his 19 innings of work. That effort earned him a spot as a LVLBL All-Star when they meet the Schuylkill-Berks All-Stars on June 29 at First Energy Field in Reading.
Murphy said that Yost is "another good player" who gives them quality starts every time he takes the ball. He'll join at staff of 10 pitchers who will be playing in the annual classic.
Offensively, Coplay has a number of players who are having a strong season. Matthew Miller is batting a scorching .467, including a triple and six RBIs, while Austin Dreisbach is batting .444 with a pair of doubles. Additionally, Gianni Sinatore is batting .400 with three doubles and two RBIs. Finally, Bryce Crum is batting .294 with a pair of doubles.
Coplay has scored 40 runs this season, while batting .252 as a team.
"We're really hitting the ball well," said Murphy. "We have some players who've really been right on the ball."
Both Miller and Dreisbach were named LVLBL All-Stars as well, with Dreisbach being selected as the starting catcher.
Murphy said that their mission is to win that next game. Once they get that win to break the losing streak, confidence will rise.