Tough, Cold Night For Prospects
By John Short
The Edmonton Prospects lost both a valuable Canadian pitcher and a rain-shortened Western Canadian Baseball League game at RE/MAX Field Wednesday night before about 1,000 fans.
Clearly, the major loss in the 8-2 defeat by the Medicine Hat Mavericks was right-hander Jesse Poniewozik of nearby Spruce Grove. He left the game in the fourth inning after a line drive by hard-hitting Austin Sojka hit him squarely on the right side of his head. Poniewozik staggered for two or three strides before falling to the turf, apparently unconscious. He stayed down for several minutes before regaining his feet and was escorted to the Prospects dugout by a couple of mates.
He was examined by medical personnel immediately after the frightening incident but no information was available on the extent of the damage. Poniewozik, who leads the Prospects in earned-run average after several outstanding relief performances, was making his first start of the season. He is a student at Okanagan College. (Editor's note: It's positive news for pitcher Jesse Poniewozik. He was sent to hospital. The CT Scan revealed that he had a mild concussion. He thanks everyone for their concern.)
As the fourth inning started, in chilly and increasing rain, Poniewozik was trying to protect a two-run constructed earlier on singles by Edgar Harrell and Beaux Guilbeau, which scored Tanner Roundy and Pierce Blohowiak. Apart from that promising spurt, Medicine Hat’s Jaymon Cervantes was in near-total control.
A fielding error by shortstop Javier Ramirez soon opened the door for the Mavericks, who shared their scoring evenly in the fourth and fifth innings – four runs each with errors as a major factor. Singles by Collin Klingensmith, Tito Jones and Freddy Walker, along with one of Blohowiak’s two errors in left field, put the Mavericks up by one run before Sojka’s wicked blast off Poniewozik went for a hit and brought relief pitcher Zac Harrington into the game.
The fifth inning was equally productive for the Mavericks. Poniewozik was charged with three earned runs and Harrington with only two.
Rain forced a delay of at least an hour at the top of the sixth inning as Harrell prepared to lead off. Umpires consulted many times with officials of both teams before calling the game at about 10 p.m. The victory kept Medicine Hat alone in third place in the Alberta Conference of the WCBL and Edmonton retained sole possession of fourth spot, a game ahead of the Fort McMurray Giants.