The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

July 23, 2013

Little League Baseball: Big first inning lifts Montoursville past Upper Dauphin

By Anthony Mitchell

For The Daily Item

MONTOURSVILLE -- Mason Sechrist may have went against his coach's usual plan for an at-bat.

However, Montoursville manager Lee Ranck would be hard-pressed to talk Sechrist into changing his approach, considering that Sechrist played a large role in Montoursville's 20-2 win in four innings over Upper Dauphin in the Section 3 Age 10-11 Division final.

Or maybe it would be better to say that Sechrist had a grand part in the victory. Sechrist blasted two grand slams in his first two at-bats as part of a 12-run first inning for Montoursville.

On both of his first two swats, Sechrist decided that he did not want to watch a pitch go past him. Coming up with the bases loaded, Sechrist did not waste any time putting his team on the board, cranking the first pitch over the fence for a grand slam.

Sechrist explained that Ranck usually tells his hitters to look at the first pitch before swinging. However, after being given a green light to swing at the first pitch, Sechrist found the first pitch to his liking and swung away.

"(The grand slams) feel really good," Sechrist said, clearly ecstatic over sending two pitches deep over the fence. "I don't think I've ever seen (two grand slams in one inning) before, but it feels really great."

Sechrist can look up to former major league third baseman Fernando Tatis, who pulled off the feat for the St. Louis Cardinals on April 23, 1999, to become the only Major League player to do so.

"(Sechrist made) two good swings and they went a long way," Montoursville assistant coach Mitch Wood said. "(It) really opened the game up for us. More power to him. When you're swinging that good, keep swinging."

Sechrist's grand slams did more than open the game up for a hot-hitting Montoursville offense. Sechrist's blasts motivated a squad that was seeing the ball well to continue to swing away.

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