Week 1 Recap: Pitching inexperience stings Hornets, drop to 0-2

Rajath Prabhakar, Director of Design

One year after seeing their season cut short by the COVID-19 crisis, the Hornets knew they would have inexperience, especially on the pitching end. Said athletic director Ben Sutter, “we have some key players that will need to pick up the slack and some young arms that need anchor a very inexperienced pitching staff”.

The inexperience reared its ugly head in both games played thus far, as the Hornets squandered a brilliant outing from senior Elliot Esposito (5 IP, 0 R, 0 walks). The 3 runs scored by Lanier off freshman Adam McKelvey in the 5th inning proved to be the difference.

Friday’s home opener saw Alex Johnson (11) make his varsity debut. It did not end well. After giving up a homer on the second pitch of the game, the Riverwood shortstop worked a 10-pitch at-bat that eventually ended in a walk. 5 batters later, Johnson was yanked. His final score-line: 0.1 innings, 3 hits, 6 earned runs, 2 walks, and a strikeout.  The Raiders would eventually post 7 runs in the first inning alone.

Said Alex Johnson after the game: “That team [Riverwood] was a good hitting team. They were patient and waited for the right pitch. You don’t see a lot of that in JV. So you can really tell the difference in competition.”

Roswell’s other pitchers fared no better. Jack Moore (12) gave up 5 runs (2 earned) and 2 walks. Ricky Kalaman (11) gave up 3 runs and struck out 2 batters. And Garrett Goodkin finished the game, recording 4 innings of 4-run ball.

“For me, playing teams like Riverwood help a lot considering that’s the level I am going to be playing against more often so I am getting more prepared for what is going to happen instead of just going in and hoping for the best” Johnson said.

On the other side, senior Ben Fox pitched a solid 4 innings, recording 1 ER, 3 walks, and 4 strikeouts. His effort was more than enough for Riverwood to coast to a 15-6 win. Riverwood is now 2-0 on the season. Roswell drops to 0-2 with games against West Laurens, River Ridge, North Atlanta, Pope, and North Springs coming up.