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News Eagle - Hawley, PA
  • Kestler's Well-Represented at Annual All Star Game

  • The Hawley-based ballclub sent three players to this year's Wayne County Men's Softball classic.
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  • Three Kestler's players put on a good show at the 2013 Wayne County Men's Softball League All Star Game this past weekend.
    This gala exhibition contest was one of the featured event at the 3rd Annual Homer Dome Classic, which was held at the RD Wilson Sports Complex in Waymart.
    The benefit tournament kicked off Friday night and ran through Sunday evening
    Rich Gross and J.W. Swanick donned white jerseys and played for the East team, while Richie Walker took on the black shirt of the West team.
    According to tournament co-chairman, Kyle Barna, players had the option to choose which team they wanted to play for.
    Pete Saprona was also scheduled to play in the game, but was unable to be there. Should that have happened, Saprona would have been on the mound for East while Walker started for West.
    While a showdown between Kestler's two aces would have been a sure spectacle, members of Hawley's home team delivered enough action to make up it.
    On the Diamond
    Offensively, Gross led the charge with a single, a triple, and scored after being walked.
    While Swanick was hampered by the West's fielding and went 0-3 at the plate, defensively he made several good plays including a sliding catch to end the West's chances in the top of the fourth inning.
    Walker, perhaps, put on the best performance of any of the Kestler's players.
    Unofficially, radar clocked him hurling pitches in at 65mph. He worked the first three innings of the game allowing only three hits and two walks while chalking up three Ks in the process.
    Walker returned in the seventh inning to deliver two more strikeouts and with help from the field, closed the game: three up, three down.
    Page 2 of 2 - Squaring off against teammates certainly didn't have any effect on the Kestler's players. One of the hits Walker gave up was Gross's triple and Walker threw out Swanick heading to first off a ground ball.
    "This was one of the hardest games I've ever thrown," Walker admitted.
    Mother Nature
    If pitching against his usual teammates wasn't enough, the weather was less than cooperative.
    Light rain started in the second inning and ebbed and flowed with intensity through his shift on the mound.
    When he returned to close conditions had deteriorated further making the ball harder to handle.
    Strangely, as the weather got worse, Walker got better.
    Adding to his contributions from the rubber, Walker went 2-for-4 at the plate belting out two singles and scoring twice.
    The West went on to claim victory in this year's bout by a score of 14-5, giving Walker the win.
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