EAST LIVERPOOL - The Steubenville Catholic Central baseball team plated a combined nine runs in the third and fourth innings to break open a 2-2 deadlock on its way to a 13-4 win over host East Liverpool Tuesday.
Central's Aleks Porreca limited the Potters to eight hits and four runs in six innings of work to earn the win. Brenton Colabella clubbed a two-run homer in the opening frame to put the Crusaders up 2-0. East Liverpool's Austyn Dozier knotted the score with a two-run shot over the left field fence in the bottom of the inning.
"Central is a quality baseball team," said East Liverpool head coach Ryan Willis. "They are one of the best teams in the area. We kept on battling even though we got a little shook up after they hit some real hard shots."
Central tallied four times in the third to take a 6-2 lead, followed by five more in the fourth. Ryian Burson started for the Potters before giving way to Tyler Recktenwald with one out in the fourth with the Crusaders leading 11-2.
"We swung the bats pretty well," said Central head coach Don Young. "East Liverpool made some plays and hung in there. They didn't give up when they fell behind."
The Potters' Recktenwald doubled to lead off the sixth and came around to score when he teamed up with Jay Lane on a delayed double steal. Burson would follow with a single to drive in Lane.
"Despite not playing since Thursday, I thought we played well today," said Young.
Tony Barber and Kutch Clark paced Central's 15- hit attack with three hits each. Clark's first hit was a two-bagger. Chris Murphy, Stone Romano, Josh Melliman and Colabella had two hits each for Central.
"If we could have eliminated a couple of innings, we would have had a great baseball game," said Willis. "There were just a few small things that cost us several runs. But, we have a group of tough kids who are a pleasure to coach and I'm sure they will bounce back."
Central hosts Bishop Donahue today, while the Potters travel to Weir High.
Catholic Central 13, East Liverpool 4
Catholic Central 204 500 2 - 13 15 1
East Liverpool 200 002 0 - 4 8 1
CATHOLIC CENTRAL (12-0): Porreca (WP, 4K, 0BB), Murphy (7, 2K, 1BB) and Romano, Oliver; Colabella HR, S, 2RBI; T. Barber 3S; Clark 2S, D; Murphy 2S; Romano 2S; Merriman 2S.
EAST LIVERPOOL (3-7): Burson (LP, 0K, 2BB), Recktenwald (4, 0K, 0BB) and Meek; Rechtenwald D; Burson S, RBI; Dozier Hr, 2RBI.