Jean-Claude Ram Van Keep On Rolling With Two Straight Wins

Solid Defense and Bursts of Offense Propel Team Into Third Place After Opening Game Loss


Published: October 16, 2008

The Fordham College at Lincoln Center’s (FCLC) intramural softball team Jean-Claude Ram Van (JCRV) have picked up the pace by notching two consecutive wins. After losing their season-opening game against the Rascal Crew, JCRV beat Return of the Mack 6-4 on Sept. 29 and the Colt 45s 20-10 on Oct. 6. These two victories put JCRV in third place in the 11-team league.

“We were bound to get into a groove, and I’m glad it happened sooner, rather than later,” said team captain and pitcher, Joe Lynn, FCLC ’09. “But watch out, here comes Lincoln Center.”

On Oct. 6, JCRV hit the cover off the ball, scoring 20 runs, nine more than their last two games combined. The entire team was able to contribute offensively, starting with left fielder Mike Marra, FCLC ’09, who hit two three-run home runs in the bottom of the first and second innings.

Newly-added first baseman Erik Thompson, FCLC ’12, went 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs, including an inside-the-park home run. Lynn provided his own run support by going 3-for-4 with two singles and a double with 3 RBIs. Right fielder Christian Okolski, FCLC ’10, made his presence known with a grand slam in the bottom of the fourth inning.

When asked about the grand slam after the game, Okolski said it was “a relief, to say the least.” The grand slam was a sign that Okolski is back in prime playing form after dislocating his left shoulder on April 6 on a head-first slide into third base.

“After dislocating my shoulder in April, having surgery on it and doing physical therapy all summer, I had some doubts that I would be able to perform this season, especially after playing relatively flat in the first two games,” said Okolski. “I was just relieved to know that I still had the ability to hit the ball hard. I would have felt just as relieved if I hit a solo shot, but a grand slam definitely makes it much sweeter.”

On Sept. 29, JCRV started on the road to victory with two first-inning runs. Marra drove in JCRV’s first run on a sacrifice fly, which scored second baseman Mike Ferrer, FCLC ’09, from third base. Also, in the first inning, outfielder Mike Silvi, FCLC ’10, drove in a run with a single to cap off a two-run first inning.

JCRV did their most damage in the top of the third inning by scoring three runs off of two sacrifice flies and one solo home run. With men on second and third bases, shortstop Adam Dexter, FCLC ’10, and Ferrer hit back-to-back sacrifice flies to bring their run total to four. With the bases cleared, third baseman Justin Stark, FCLC ’10, hit a solo shot to bring the score to 6-4.

Though only putting up six runs, JCRV’s defense made sure it was good enough for a victory. In the bottom of the fourth inning, Stark made a diving stop to his left at third base, quickly got up and threw out the runner at first. Not to be outdone, in the bottom of the fifth inning, Dexter ran out to the outfield to run down a pop fly. Seeing the ball over his head, Dexter twisted his body to make the over-the-back catch in shallow center field.

“Usually, it takes a couple of games to get back into the swing, but we have hit our stride early and are continuing our streak of great defensive play,” Lynn said.

With a 2-1 record, JCRV has found its groove, with four more games to go. However, the way JCRV play from this point on will dictate whether they will make the playoffs or be sitting home in November.

“As long as we hit relatively well and keep a strong defense, I think we have a great chance at winning the league,” Okolski said.

“All the pieces are in place for us to take the championship this year,” said Lynn. “We just need to continue to play smart, clean ball, and we will be bringing a championship back to Lincoln Center.”