Like many kids home on break from college, Ryan Myers has spent his summer trying to stay ahead of the curve, while mixing in a little fun, too.
However, in recent weeks, the latter has been tough to find for the 2013 St. Mary Central Catholic graduate.
Work and summer school commitments eat up most of Myers' free time, and to make matters worse, a family emergency got added to the mix. Unlike most who celebrated Independence Day watching fireworks, Myers and his family spent the holiday in panic mode. His grandmother had a heart attack and was life flighted from Firelands Regional Medical Center to Toledo on the Fourth of July.
Needless to say, it's been tough for Myers to find time to play baseball.
But during Wednesday's performance on the mound for Port Clinton American Legion Post 113, there was no rust to be seen.
Making his first appearance in over a month, Myers tossed a complete nine-inning game, allowing three runs (one earned) on six hits, striking out five and walking only three in Post 113's 3-1 loss to Bucyrus Post 181 in a game played at Fremont St. Joseph Central Catholic's Naderer Sports Complex.
“It's been absolutely chaotic,” Myers said of the past month. “It's nice to finally be back to playing a little bit. To come out and throw nine pretty good innings felt great.
“It's the last year that I can play ball, so of course any opportunity I can show up, I will.”
Work has occupied 30-to-40 hours of his week. On top of that, the Bowling Green State University sophomore is taking classes at BGSU Firelands, including one that requires a lengthy paper — of which Myers is only on page 25 — to be turned in on Monday.
“I'm just ready for things to cool down a little bit,” Myers said. “It seems like every time I've been able to make a game, it always gets rained out.”
Myers is one of many area kids that have played for Port Clinton (18-8) this summer.
Clayton Farrar (Clyde) had two hits in four at bats to pace Post 113's offense, which struggled en route to seven hits and left nine runners on base.
Austin Spicer (Margaretta) laid down a sacrifice bunt in the fifth inning to put Tristen Roth in scoring position at third base. Roth scored two hitters later when Nick Raifsnider (Bellevue 2013) singled to left field.
“Tonight we struggled with the sticks a little bit, but the past few games we've been hitting the ball pretty well,” Spicer said. “Raif (Raifsnider) hit a home run (Tuesday) and has been swinging the bat really well out of the leadoff spot. Plus, he has a ton of bunts that have gone for base hits.
“Even though we're from a lot of different places, we all get along really well,” he added. “It's probably because a lot of us have been playing with each other for a couple years now.”
Myers' only real hiccup came in the top of the seventh inning when he allowed a leadoff triple to Bucyrus' Ridge Jackson. Tyler Beal followed with a single through the left side to put Post 181 up by its final margin.
A passed ball led to a run in the first inning. Bucyrus' second run came home in the fifth on a two-base throwing error by Post 113 first baseman Bennett Weickert.
“It was very important for (Myers) to come here today and get some work in, and we got more out of him than we expected,” Post 113 coach Robert George said. “For him to go nine innings on 110 pitches, it was just a phenomenal performance for someone who hasn't pitched in over three weeks.
“We just didn't hit, and when we did, we hit it right at someone.”
Port Clinton will travel to Massillon Perry tonight to play Massillon Post 221, before finishing the schedule with a home doubleheader Saturday against Ashland Post 88 and a game at Galion Post 243 on Sunday.
Post 83 will start District 1 tournament play Wednesday at Ottawa Post 63.
“We just need to prepare for the tournament and hopefully head into it with a little bit of momentum,” Myers said.