Christian Brothers Academy shoved five-time defending champion LaSalle further down the Big 10 standings Thursday with clutch hits, plenty of hustle, solid pitching and some help from the opposition.
Steve Basile nearly went the distance, Josh Lewyckyj and T.J. Lane both drove in a run and Chris Sand and David Russo both scored two as the Brothers tripped up the
Cadets, 7-5, and remained unbeaten in league play through five games.
LaSalle dipped to 2-3 in the Big 10 after last year’s 16-0 run, which was part of a 27-game winning streak that sent the club to the state Class AA semifinals.
“When you keep playing hard and you catch a break once in a while, good things usually happen for you,” said Lane, a senior right fielder. “Today was a good example of that.”
Trailing, 5-4, in the bottom of the sixth inning, CBA caught a big break when three runs scored on a two-out throwing error by LaSalle shortstop J.P. Sportman. Sand scored the last of those, with the husky senior sliding home just ahead of the throw for a key insurance run.
“Sand hustling around gave us a big run,” said Basile. “That was a big play.”
“He ran through my stop sign, but I didn’t get on him because he was trying to make something happen,” CBA coach Dave Doemel said of his first baseman, who belted his sixth home run in Wednesday’s 19-2 win over Bishop Maginn. “He showed a lot of hustle out there.”
It wasn’t the first time.
Sand blooped a two-out Zach Ferris pitch just beyond second base in the fifth and turned it into a double with a head-first slide. Lane followed with a run-scoring double to tie the game at 4-4.
Lane also stroked the ground ball that led to Sportsman’s third error of the contest as CBA (5-1-1 overall) erased a 5-4 deficit.
“T.J. had a two-strike count, and put the ball in play. He put the pressure on them, which is what baseball is all about,” Doemel said. “He had two big at-bats for us in the latter innings, and made things happen. He struggled yesterday, and for him to bounce back was big for us.”
The win was big for the Brothers, leaving them as the lone Big 10 unbeaten. Schenectady (3-1) and Albany (4-1) both have one league setback.
“Last year, we took a heck of a beating from them,” said Lane. “I’m glad we were able to put up a good fight, and get a win.”
“For us, every win is good, and every loss hurts,” said LaSalle coach Jesse Braverman, whose team
previously lost to Albany and
Amsterdam. “We have to play better baseball, and finish the game.”
After taking a 5-4 lead in the top of the sixth on a single by Will
Remillard, two wild pitches and another single by Wil Ryan, LaSalle could not finish the game against its longtime rival on a cold, blustery day.
Russo hit a one-out single in the home sixth and Lewyckyj stroked a two-out single before Remillard took over for Ferris. Remillard hit Sand in the back with his first pitch, and Lane followed with his grounder. Sportman bobbled the ball, and then threw it toward second base with such force that it sailed into foul territory.
“J.P. is a great shortstop,” Sand said of the junior. “He made an
error, and we took advantage.”
“When he didn’t catch it cleanly, I think he rushed his throw,” said Braverman. “Errors happen, but if you look back to the first inning, he got a big hit for us, too.”
Basile limited the damage, though, and ended up surrendering six hits with three walks and four strikeouts in his second victory this season.
“Steve was a little amped up and gave up a couple [of runs] early, then he settled down pretty good,” Doemel said of the sophomore right-hander.
Zach Remillard reached on an error to begin the LaSalle seventh, and after center fielder Tonio Viscusi made a running grab, Dan Kutney relieved Basile to face Scott Morrissey in a lefty-against-lefty matchup. Kutney got Morrissey on a soft liner to second, and Basile returned to strike out Sportman on a curveball.
“I was hoping coach would let me stay in. When he took me out, I was hoping to get back in there,” said Basile. “I wanted a chance to finish it off.”
LaSalle started off strong, when Kyle Charron singled and Sportman doubled him home before scoring on Will Remillard’s groundout. Kutney’s single and a walk to Russo started a three-run third for CBA, those runs scoring on Lewyckyj’s single, a wild pitch and an error.
Ryan hit a one-out single in the LaSalle fourth, and, after a walk to Will Kiley and a flyout, Nick Bernardo belted a two-run double to make it a 4-3 game.
“One thing I like about these kids over the last three, four games is they’re not dwelling on what went wrong,” Doemel said. “They’re more concerned with what the next guy is going to do. They’re trying to create something.”
LaSalle 200 201 0 — 5 6 3
CBA 003 013 x — 7 9 1
Ferris, W. Remmilard (6) and W. Remillard, Bridenbeck (6); Basile, Kutney (7), Basile (7) and Russo.
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Categories: High School Sports