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BARNSTORMERS DROP HOME OPENER

Twist Record Set Unofficially

The Lancaster Barnstormers bats could not produce that one needed hit late in the game.

They fell, 2-1, to the undefeated Somerset Patriots before a crowd of 6,870 in the home opener of the club’s 12th season at Clipper Magazine Stadium.

Unofficially, after the third inning, Lancaster fans, led by pop icon Chubby Checker, set the world’s record for the most people simultaneously dancing The Twist.  Video and photographic evidence along with sworn affidavits have been sent to the Guinness Book of World Records for their verification.

Aharon Eggleston provided the offense for the Patriots, scoring both of the club’s runs.  The left fielder doubled into the left field corner with two outs in the third and scampered home when Bryan LaHair drove a single to the right field wall.

Two innings later, Eggleston laced a double over Caleb Gindl’s head in right field with one out.  He moved to third on a LaHair grounder and raced home with a wild pitch from Austin Bibens-Dirkx (1-1) kicked away to the right of catcher Charlie Cutler.

Cutler provided Lancaster’s only run with his first Barnstormers’ home run, a blast over the tents in right off Jeremy Horst (1-0) in the third.

Horst allowed only four hits and one walk in 6 1/3 innings while striking out seven.

The Barnstormers had numerous chances to catch up in the late innings.  In the seventh, Mike McDade singled to left to lead off.  One out later, Kevin Ahrens greeted reliever Gus Schlosser with a single, and a wild pitch put runners at second and third.  Josh Whitaker walked to load the bases, but Schlosser struck out Charlie Cutler and Travis Witherspoon in succession to escape the jam.  Gindl was stranded at second in the eighth inning.  In the ninth, Mike Jacobs scorched a single into right off closer Jon Hunton, and pinch runner Michael Crouse wheeled to third on a Cutler base hit to center.

Hunton got Witherspoon on strikes for his third save of the year and 131st in his Atlantic League career, leaving him three shy of the record held by Southern Maryland’s Jim Ed Warden.

NOTES:  Jeff Kobernus opened the game with a single to extend his hitting streak to eight…Gindl has hit safely in all seven games he has played, and Jacobs has reached base safely in all eight…Each pitching staff struck out 12 batters in the game…Lancaster’s Mike Lee fanned five of the six hitters he faced.