The hit that changed the game for Turpin's Tripp Wyenandt
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Last week, Withrow and Turpin matched up on the diamond.
No playoff implications were on the line, and neither team has a winning record this season. Withrow hasn't won a game, but years from now, no one will remember that, They'll remember the night when Withrow's pitcher Dominic Johnson willingly served up a high throw that hung just enough for Turpin senior Tripp Wyendandt, who was born learning disadvantaged, to rip an RBI-double in his first career at -bat.
"I just want to thank Withrow for them giving me that moment, to let me hit. I wasn't expecting that but once they came up to me and gave me high fives... that means a lot to me," Wyendandt said.
"My first thought was, 'what class'. These kids to show that type of support for Tripp, and they didn't even know him was just incredible," said Wyendandt's mom Dee Dee.
The world around him moves a little slower. His mind is on the here and now. And that Wednesday night, everyone got to experience that present moment. The one we're unconsciously running from to get to the next.
"Pretty excited for him. But everyone was fired up. The Withrow kids were almost as excited as our guys which was really cool too," Turpin head coach Don Gullet Jr. said.
"He was at second base and I was at shortstop so i just gave him a hug," Withrow senior Keyandre Davis said.
"To get that experience... and I just never dreamed he would line one over the third baseman's head for a double. It was like a gift from God it really was," Wyendandt's dad Bo said.
"We could win a state title and it wouldn't mean as much as what that meant when Tripp got that hit," Turpin assistant coach Jeremy Snider said.
Moments are fleeting, but this wasn't one of those. Instead of fleeting, more were forming. When Withrow returned to Turpin eight days later, on Tripp's 19th birthday, the newly-formed friendships were evident.
"He came up and gave me a big hug, said whats up, and I said, 'If you get up to bat, I might have to strike you out,'" joked Dominic Johnson.
"The respect and care they have for the game, I've been trying to get that out of them all year. It took all year, just that moment in order to get them to take it to the next level a little bit," added Withrow head coach Thomas Cox.
Jake Silverstein is headed to the University of Dayton to continue his baseball career, and said he won't forget that moment for the rest of his life. "You might take one at-bat for granted. We get a couple at-bats a game. How important one at-bat can be to somebody and how lucky we are to have all of these at-bats."