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 Saturday, July 9, 1988




It's fun again for Angels' Weiss

Of The Morning Call

As an usher in his sister Barb's wedding today, Dale Weiss will be guiding guests to the appropriate seats.

Last night in Scherersville, Weiss guided a few baseballs to some desirable locations as he belted a three-run home run and drove in six runs to lead the Allentown Angels to a 10-6 Tri-County League victory over visiting Gilbertsville in a game halted by darkness after 5 1/2 innings.

Weiss missed the wedding's rehearsal to play in the game. Gilbertsville, falling to 13-8, wished he would have missed the game as the Dieruff High and Muhlenberg College grad got the Angels flying early as he followed first inning walks to Joe Aleszczyk and Dave Chapman with a rope over the 380-foot sign in straightaway center.

The home run was Weiss' sixth in his last seven games and when he added a two-run double in the second and another run-scoring double in the third, he was the proud owner of an 8-for-8 streak that stretched over three games.

Of course, hitting streaks are nothing new to Weiss. He was hitting line drives as a second-grader at Ritter Elementary School and went on to have considerable success at Harrison-Morton Junior High, Dieruff and Muhlenberg. But no matter how many good games you have, the last one always feels good.

"Sure, it feels great to be in this kind of groove at the plate," said Weiss, who also turned in a couple of sparkling defensive plays at shortstop. "You can't wait to hit when you're in a stretch like this.

"But a lot of the credit has to go to the rest of the lineup. The guys in front of me are hitting right now and the guys behind me are coming through, too, and that means I'm getting good pitches to hit. We're all complementing one another. If one guy doesn't do it, the next guy does."

All of the Angels had a piece in the 17-hit pie Allentown threw at Gilbertsville. Aleszczyk was 3-for-4, including a bases-empty home run in the fifth and four runs scored; Mookie Smith was 3-for-4 with an RBI-single in the second, while Herb Hemerly and Dave Chapman were both 2-for-3. Chapman also knocked in one run and scored two.

"Everybody has been coming through for us," said Angel skipper Ray Ganser, whose team is 15-4 and staying on the heels of Coplay in the Tri-Co's North Division race. "I've been here for eight years and have been through a lot of dog days when we were cellar dwellers, so this year really is enjoyable because we're winning and have a team where the guys get along so well.

"We started turning things around last year when we just missed the playoffs. Then this year, we picked up a few guys who had been playing at Limeport - Dale, Herbie Hemerly and Dave Lutte - and they really have solidified our team. We've already clinched the first winning season in the team's history. But because I remember the old days, I still do a lot of worrying. You don't forget the bad days."

But at least for the moment, the bad days for the Angels are as gone as one of Weiss' home runs. To go along with the potent offense, Allentown has gotten solid pitching from Ganser, Lutte, Chapman, Mike Witkowski, Scott Buck and last night's winner, Todd Downing.

Downing, who was the starting quarterback at Allen High and just completed his freshman year at Methodist College in Fayetteville, N.C., had a three- hitter through five innings. Using what he called "a drop changeup," Downing kept the Rangers offstride until the sixth when Gilbertsville struck for four hits and four runs. Lutte came on to get what proved to be the game- ending outs as darkening skies forced the action to end.

"They say winning isn't everything, but winning does make playing fun," said Weiss, who had his 8-for-8 streak broken with a 375-foot flyout to center in the fifth. "Last year, playing ball had become a second job for me. Now, it's fun again."

QUAKERTOWN 16, NORTH PARKLAND 10 - A total of 25 hits produced 26 runs with Quakertown on top over visiting North Parkland.

Quakertown (12-6) had starter Tom Hartman and relievers Bob Kile and Glenn Dally pitching to catcher Steve Bauder with Dally winding up the game's winner.

Two homers were hit by Kile - a solo shot in his team's three-run first inning and a two-run shot in his team's five-run second. Also adding to Quakertown's 16 runs was Scott Davis who had a two-run shot in the first.

North Parkland (11-8) had two hits each from Randy Engle and loser Dan Yannes.

SALISBURY 11, OLD ZIONSVILLE 7 - Salisbury scored six runs in the fourth inning, capped by a Dave Ernst grand slam, as the hosts set down Old Zionsville in six innings.

Joe Ambrose helped Old Z to a 4-1 in the second, lacing a two-run triple and scoring on a Jeff Kressley single. Salisbury retook the lead in the sixth when Leo Bott singled and scored on a Joe Ernst sacrifice fly, and two walks and a fielder's choice loaded the sacks for Dave Ernst, who won the game in relief.

Ambrose was 3-for-3, and Mike Lenygel had two hits for Old Zionsville in the losing cause.


From The Morning Call -- July 9, 1988

Copyright 1988, The Morning Call