ARLINGTON >> For young and inexperienced teams, gains aren't always measured in wins and losses. Sometimes it's an inning or even a single at-bat.
Undermanned with some players out, the Arlington baseball team ran out the nine players they had on Friday afternoon against Poultney and while the Blue Devils won 17-0 in five innings, the Eagles and coach Tim Stewart took some positives from the season opener.
"We're truly learning the game right now, you can't assume anything as coaches," Stewart said. "I think by the end [of the season] we'll be a good team to watch."
The first game was a tough one for Arlington as Poultney scored 10 runs in the first three innings. Trey Rogers scored four times out of the leadoff spot for the Blue Devils, while Joe Brown added another three runs with two hits from the No. 3 spot in the lineup.
Jack Lane started for Arlington and pitched the first four innings, allowing 10 runs and striking out four.
Poultney started with a pair of runs in the first inning on three singles before Lane bore down and got out of the inning with a strikeout and a groundout back to the box.
In the second inning, the Blue Devils scored six times, helped out by a pair of errors and a couple of walks.
"We gave them too many outs on plays, hopefully by the end of the year, we're making more of those," Stewart said. "There'll be less pitches and more exciting. It's encouraging. We're missing guys but the guys who were here get a lot of credit."
By the fourth inning, Lane settled down for a mostly-clean inning, allowing a hit and walk, but he didn't give up any runs as his defense came up with a good play. Dylan Manning was hit by a pitch and Justin Rogers singled to center. On the play, Manning tried to move to third, but a solid relay throw was on the mark and Manning was called out.
Connor Hill started for Poultney and was on point from the start. He struck out the first five hitters in the Eagles lineup and seven of the first eight. Arlington's best offensive chance came in the third. With one out, Will Stewart singled past the shortshop and Darren Golden bunted for a base hit to put two runners on. But Hill got a strikeout and a forceout to end the inning.
Hill allowed just two hits and struck out nine total.
Golden came in to pitch the fifth, allowing seven runs in his first outing ever as a pitcher.
"Darren is a solid centerfielder and he'll be our No. 2 pitcher," Stewart said. "His mechanics are really improving."
Arlington has 10 days off as the school has spring break. They are scheduled to face Proctor on April 25.