MOUNT VERNON — In an unseasonably cool afternoon, the baseball team from Utica Post 92 stayed hot on the field.
The Knox County Royals knocked out the team from Johnstown Post 254, 11-1, in a six-inning mercy-rule game.
The hottest of the hot on Tuesday was on the mound for the Royals. Riley Swanson had a signature performance on the mound, pitching the first five innings and facing just one over the minimum.
The only trouble Swanson was in was at the start, when an error allowed the lead-off hitter, Chris McLain, to reach third. He scored on the next at-bat on a sacrifice fly.
From then on, it was smooth sailing for Swanson.
He went on to strike out seven batters in the subsequent five innings of work. He allowed just one hit, a bloop single in the fifth. (The batter was eventually caught stealing third.) Most amazingly, Swanson allowed just one fly ball in that stretch.
“I had a lot of faith in my teammates,” Swanson said. “I don’t pay attention to the stats. I just try to stay focused on the job at hand. ... I just wanted to throw strikes and let our defense play.”