Varsity Baseball Advances to 2-0 with Win Over York Catholic

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Varsity Baseball Advances to 2-0 with Win Over York Catholic

Michael Zabkowski, Sports Editor

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In the team’s second game of the season, the Varsity Baseball team played a home game against York Catholic on March 28. After a strong performance from the offense and terrific work from senior pitcher Garrett Lowe, the Rams beat the Irish 10-1.

The Rams’ starting lineup was: junior center fielder William “Max” Cooper, junior shortstop Wyatt McCleary, Lowe, junior catcher Garrett Meckley, sophomore third baseman Ryan Schubert, junior right fielder Jason Williams, senior second baseman Brian Romig, senior first baseman Timothy “T.J.” Grimsley, and sophomore left fielder Tyler Nagel.

Looking back at the game, head coach Blake Knecht said, “The game went well. [Lowe] commanded the zone and got himself to a point where he felt comfortable. Our offense this year has been a real spark plug and has put us in great positions as a team.”

Lowe struck out ten batters in six and a third innings of work. “For his first ever start as a pitcher he threw very well.  He commanded the zone and got himself to a point where he felt comfortable. He didn’t try to do too much, but rather stayed within himself and was successful,” Knecht said.

To begin the game, the Irish got a runner on base, but Lowe kept York Catholic from scoring in the top of the first inning.

On the offensive end, Cooper started the bottom of the first with a double. Then, McCleary hit a double, Cooper scored, and the Rams took a 1-0 lead.

However, McCleary did not score after getting that double, and the lead stayed at 1-0 at the end of the first inning.

In the top of the second inning, the Irish got a runner on base early. That player stole second base during the next at bat, and later scored on an RBI single tying the game at 1-1. In the bottom of the second, the Rams went three up, three down.

After McCleary’s RBI double in the first inning, York Catholic retired eight batters in a row including the three Rams sat down in the bottom of the third inning. The score was still tied at 1-1.

Next, Lowe kept the Irish from getting on base in the top of the fourth inning, giving the Rams a great opportunity to break the tie in the bottom half of the inning.

McCleary did just that for the Rams with a hit to start the bottom of the fourth inning. McCleary soon found himself on second base with a steal, and a little later on, advanced to third base on a wild pitch.

Meckley’s at bat resulted in a walk, and right after that, Schubert got hit by a pitch, giving the Rams a chance to break the tie with the bases loaded.

After Schubert’s hit by pitch, Williams drove in two runs with a base hit, resulting in the Rams taking the lead 3-1 with only one out in the inning.

Next, Romig walked, reloading the bases (Schubert at third, Williams at second, and Romig now at first). Grimsley hit the ball down the third base line, and the Irish infielder threw home for the forced out.

However, a run did score on the previous play due to an error made when York Catholic attempted to get a double play, Rams then led 4-1.

Next, Nagel drove in two runs with a base hit, extending the Rams lead to 6-1. A little later on in the inning, McCleary hit an RBI single, taking the Rams lead to 7-1 before York Catholic managed to get the third out.

Jumping to the top half of the sixth inning, the York Catholic lead off batter hit a single, but Romig tagged him out on his attempt for a double. Then, Lowe hit the second and third batters on the inning, giving the Irish two men on base with only one out.

However, a strikeout and a later groundout ended the top of the sixth without York Catholic being able to take advantage of the hit batters.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, McCleary continued his terrific offense with an RBI single to take the Rams lead to 8-1. Senior pitcher Cole Sinnott said, “McCleary did a great job, he’s worked hard in the offseason and is a great power hitter.”

Then, what could have been one of the most interesting situations of the game unfolded. With Lowe at bat, a fresh pitcher was brought in for York Catholic.

Then, on the first pitch, Lowe got hit, but the umpire did not grant him first base, and claimed that Lowe did not try to avoid the pitch. So, with Lowe getting another chance for a hit, and the Irish getting another chance at getting Lowe out, the at bat continued.

On the very next pitch, Lowe crushed the ball for a two-run home run, boosting the Rams’ lead to 10-1.

“[senior pitcher Matt] Tracey told me ‘I’m going to laugh if he destroys this next ball,’ and I was waiting for Lowe to crank one out, and as soon as the bat hit the ball, we all knew it was [a home run], and everyone in the dugout was laughing,” Sinnott said.

Later, Lowe got the first out in the top of the seventh inning, and then junior pitcher Constantine Gereny was brought into the game to get the final two outs. Gereny did just that, sealing the Rams their second win of the season.

With this win over York Catholic, the Rams start the season 2-0, as they build confidence for tougher games in division play.

“I think we are doing well because we’ve been doing the little things right. We have been trying to find minute things we can improve upon as individuals and as a team, and I think it’s really paid off. As for the rest of the season, I think it means that now we have confidence to face division teams like West York and Bermudian Springs,” Sinnott said.