Bruins attack Crusaders under the lights, 19-2
STEUBENVILLE — Sometimes a little confidence early in a game can go a long way.
After a tough week and not getting hits to drop in key situations, they dropped early and often for Brooke under the shiny new Vaccaro Field lights Friday night, lifting the Bruins to a 19-2 rout of Catholic Central.
“I thought we did well at the plate. Even the ones we didn’t hit on the button seemed to fall for us, where in the last three games they didn’t fall for us,” Brooke head coach C.J. Besece said. “It’s good to have luck on our side and have those balls drop in there. There were times in the last couple games where we had guys on and hit line drives to the outfield, but they were right at guys. Teams were making good plays against us, diving for balls.
“It feels good for the kids to have some hits drop and have some luck It’s good to gain some confidence.”
The Bruins cranked out 10 hits in the win in the nightcap, their first of the young season and the first for the first-year coach, Besece.
“It feels great to get the first one, we were in tough games Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. We were ahead going in the fifth and sixth inning in two of the games thinking this could be it, and teams fought back against us and beat us,” Besece said. “It felt like when is it ever going to happen. I’m proud of these kids and happy for these kids, they needed a win.
“These kids and all of us have been really wanting to get that first win for Coach U (Ron Ujcich). I’m proud of our guys for going out there and getting it, I know he’s looking down on us and is proud.”
Four Bruins (1-3) cranked multiple hits and multiple RBIs. Alex Garrett had a two-run double in the top of the fifth, as did Zachary Ely in a pinch-hitting role. Braelyn Sperringer singled twice and drove in two, as did Andrew Coursin.
Freshman pitcher Carson Lauttamus went all five innings of the mercy-rule shortened contest, striking out six and walking just one. He struck out four in the first two innings and did not yield a run until the bottom of the the fourth, not allowing an earned run until the the final frame.
“Carson pitched a great game,” Besece said. “He got behind in a couple of counts and got himself in some situations, but for a freshman, he handled himself well and got out of it. When he gets ahead in the count, he’s hard to hit, because he has three or four different pitches to throw. A couple of times he got down in the count 3-0 and we had to come back with fastballs. He’ll learn from that, he’s only 14 years old. He’s a good kid, we’re real proud of him.”
For Catholic Central (3-8), a rough start compounded what had been a long week for the shorthanded Crusaders, who committed the first two of their six errors in the top of the first helping dig a 4-0 hole. Brooke eventually ended up with a 10-0 lead before Central got on the board in the bottom of the fourth.
“We didn’t show up ready to play,” Catholic Central head coach Aaron Henderson said. “I’m not going to make excuses. We have a couple guys out, we’re a young team, it’s hard to fill holes in those situations, but we still have to show up ready to play.
“Hats off to Brooke, they showed up ready to play. It’s cold, it’s under the lights, it’s late, but they showed up ready and we didn’t.”
Brooke, after scoring four in the first and third innings, exploded in the top of the fifth to leave little doubt about the game, which started nearly an hour later than the advertised start time due to the Big Red-Indian Valley game that was before it running long, ending in the fifth with the 10-run-rule in effect, plating nine runs and having 12 batters step to the plate before a duo of Central pitchers could record an out.
“It’s been a long week for us, there’s been a lot going on,” Henderson said. “It’s catching up to us this week. It’s catching up to us as a young team and catching up to us in a tough schedule. We have to do a better job of making the routine plays instead of giving extra outs like we did.”
Central’s lone RBI came from Kody Carver in the fifth inning, while Ryan Anderson went 3 for 3, all singles, for the Crusaders. Andrew Dorsey scored an unconventional run in the fourth, advancing on a throwing error from third, where he got plunked in the head by a throw from first.
Brooke: Was set to conclude a busy first week taking the field for a sixth time in as many days (Monday’s rain shortened opener was unofficial) taking on Beaver Local Saturday before returning home to tentatively face St. Clairsville on Monday.
Catholic Central: Gets a couple of needed days off before hosting Madonna on Monday.
Brooke 19, Catholic Central 2
Brooke 4-1-4 1-9 — 19 10 1
Central 0-0-0 1-1 — 2 7 6
BROOKE (1-3): Lauttamus (WP, CG, 2R, 1ER, 7H, 6K, 1BB, 1HBP) and Goettel. Lauttamus S, RBI; Garrett S, D, 2RBI; Coursin 2S, 2RBI; Sperringer 2S, 2RBI; Goettel S; Ely D, 2RBI; Jezierski S, RBI; Bachinski RBI; Fuscardo D, RBI; Buchmelter RBI.
CATHOLIC CENTRAL (3-8): Solema (LP, 3IP, 9R, 6ER, 7H, 1K, 1BB, 1HBP), Stark (1IP, 7R, 5ER, 0K, 4BB, 1HBP), Kissinger (1IP, 3R, 3ER, 0K, 3BB, 1HBP) and Dorsey. Anderson 3S; Solema S; Carver S, RBI; McKenna S, Fallon S; Rauch S.