Before a Skyline Conference meeting with Mazama, Henley pitcher Dylan Fitts’ little brother, Austin, bet Heith Rasica could not get a grand slam.
In the top fifth inning, with the bases loaded, Rasica took it to heart when he smacked a baseball past left field for his first grand slam ever and helped No. 4 Henley beat No. 12 Mazama, 22-4.
Rasica is known for having one of the most aggressive swings for Henley.
His swing for his grand slam did not appear to even be his normal hack at the baseball but still went over the fence with ease. As he crossed home plate, Rasica pointed toward Austin Fitts to remind him of the bet.
“He comes to all our games and he bet me 20 bucks that I could not do it,” Rasica said. “I think that was my first one. It feels great, especially when you piece the ball up pretty good. It makes you feel good when you hit a ball that well.”
It was Dylan Fitts who earned the win for Henley. He gave up five Viking hits, three runs and ended with four strike outs, with only one walk.
The Hornets were propelled by an 11-run third inning that helped end the 1-1 tie when the frame started.
The power-hitting third inning started with a RBI double by senior Blake Loney.
The inning was not left without Mazama mistakes, which included two hit batters and two walks. Later in the inning, former Mazama Viking Andrew Reynolds had a two RBI double, one of his three hits of the evening.
Cade Fanning followed with a RBI single and setup the two RBI double of Trevor Rote.
Rasica later had a RBI single, and James Hasskamp ended the onslaught with a RBI double.
Mazama responded with a RBI double by Alex Hayden in the ensuing inning, along with a RBI single by Zach Gibson in the bottom fourth inning.
Henley was not done.
Eight more runs came in the top fifth inning, which included the grand slam by Rasica.
John Tacchini also had a hot bat for Henley and ended with two hits, both which were singles. Sophomore Skyler Howard had two hits as well, which included a two RBI double in the top fifth inning. Loney, Rote and Fanning ended with two hits as well.
The Vikings will look to make themselves with the Hornets in a doubleheader starting at noon Saturday at Rosser Field.
“It is exciting because this is my first real year playing. This is the whole reason I came to Henley. It is a whole new breed. I think our pitchers did phenomenal,” Hasskamp said. “Coach Randall, at the beginning of the year, told us before we bat, if we have a final thought. So before the plate, I say my final thought and I just think of dominance and attack.”
“I think this is a great team. We are a very good program and we want to make statements and do our best. I realize I have to go out there and be that leader after I have been here for three years now.” Rasica said. “To be a good hitter, you just have to keep going and keep that dedication and passion, regardless of how many times you do something wrong.”