A look at the next level
Local American Legion players take on Alaska Baseball League’s Chinooks
Chugiak and Eagle River American Legion all-stars and the Chinooks congratulate each other after their exhibition game Saturday, June 15 at Loretta French Park.
It didn’t matter who you rooted for Saturday, June 15 at Loretta French Park — both sides were home teams.
The Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks played a seven-inning exhibition game against Chugiak Post 33 and Eagle River American Legion all-stars.
Taking the mound opposite Alaska Baseball League players was nerve-racking, said Chugiak’s Conner Cimmiyotti, who pitched one inning against the Chinooks.
“It’s a lot different from high school,” he said. “I didn’t want to be the guy that gave up a home run.”
Cimmiyotti allowed two hits and an earned run in his one inning of work. Ty Griffith, a former Post 33 player and 2008 ERHS graduate, handled most of the pitching as both Legion teams had doubleheaders the following day.
Batting against the Chinooks — who used wood bats while Legion used aluminum — was an exciting challenge, said Eagle River’s David Fuller.
“It was more fun than anything to see the higher level,” said Fuller, who had one of the all-stars’ three hits.
Chugiak’s Deven Ferriss went 2-for-3 to lead the all-stars.
The scrimmage, which the Chinooks won 9-0, was a good opportunity for the Legion players to see how different the game is at the collegiate level, Chugiak head coach Bill Lierman said.
“It allows them to realize the little things get magnified,” he said.
It also gave Chugiak and Eagle River players a rare chance to share a dugout.
Whatever animosity might be felt playing against their crosstown rivals disappeared when the two formed one team, Fuller said.
“We’ve all been friends since little league,” he said.
Last year, Lierman and Chinooks’ general manager Chris Beck discussed hosting the exhibition game, but finding a day that worked for all three teams proved difficult.
Now that the first one has happened, the teams would like to see it continued.
“It’s definitely worth doing,” Eagle River head coach Gregg Frost said. “It was a lot of fun.”
“It was a good experience,” he said. “I hope we do this again.”
During the game, Palmer’s Nancy McGee found out she was the winner of an ounce of gold. The Chinooks booster club held the raffle to help cover the cost of equipping a new concession stand, which is slated to open at the end of the month.
Here’s a look ABL scores for the past week:
Pilots 13, Chinooks 0
The Glacier Pilots racked up 18 hits en route to a 13-0 win over the Chinooks on Tuesday, June 18 at Mulcahy Stadium. It was the second straight shutout for the Chinooks, who fell to 1-4 in league play.
The Chinooks hosted the Pilots on Wednesday, June 19, but a score was not available when the Star went to press.
Chugiak-Eagle River plays the Pilots today (June 20) at 7 p.m. at Loretta French before playing a doubleheader against the Bucs on Friday, June 21 starting at 6 p.m. at Mulcahy.
The Chinooks then travel to Mat-Su on Saturday, June 22 for a 7 p.m. start before hosting the Peninsula Oilers on Monday, June 24 at 7 p.m. The Chinooks then play at Mat-Su on Tuesday, June 25 at 7 p.m.
Bucs 7, Chinooks 0
The Anchorage Bucs blanked the Chinooks 7-0 on Monday, June 17 at Mulcahy Stadium. Bucs pitchers Garrett Mundell and David Herd held the Chinooks to just four hits and struck out a combined 11 batters.
C-ER 4, Pilots 3, 14 inn.
Jacob Murray hit an RBI single in the top of the 14th inning to lift the Chinooks past the Glacier Pilots 4-3 on Sunday, June 16 at Mulcahy Stadium. Murray’s single scored Griffin Gum, who doubled to get into scoring position.
Pilots 7, Chinooks 2
The Anchorage Glacier Pilots held the Chinooks to just three hits in a 7-2 win Friday, June 14 at Loretta French Park.
Stephen Ventimillia drove in both Chinooks runs.
Chinooks 2, Miners 2
The Chinooks and Miners played to a 2-2 draw in nonleague action June 12 at Hermon Brothers Field.
Daniel Arthur went 3-for-5 with an RBI to lead Chugiak-Eagle River. Zach Harbison went 2-for-3 for the Chinooks, who had 12 total hits — four times as many as Mat-Su.