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North Olmsted 1, Lutheran West 0
By Mark Fenske  | staff
Saturday, April 23, 2016   |  box score

ROCKY RIVER --  Just over 14 hours after a disappointing defeat on the road at Firelands, Lutheran West was back at it, hosting the North Olmsted Eagles for an 11 am game on Saturday.  West didn’t show any signs of a hangover from the sloppy play on Friday, but failed to capitalize on a stellar pitching performance from freshman John Smolik (L, 0-1). 

Smolik was brilliant, throwing a complete game five hitter, but got no run support from his lineup, who managed three hits off of three pitchers from North Olmsted.  Smolik threw only 78 pitches in the seven inning performance, collecting three strikeouts and only walking one.  Unfortunately, the one walk, coupled with a balk, ended up being the decisive run in the game.

Smolik never allowed more than one baserunner in any inning in the game—except for the decisive fifth inning.  After a leadoff groundout to sophomore shortstop Matt Brosky, Smolik walked #8 hitter Clay Rainey on four pitches.  Smolik had only gone to three balls on two hitters previous—and both on full counts.  During the next at bat, Rainey broke to second while Smolik still held the ball on the mound.  Instead of stepping off, and consequently picking off Rainey, Smolik panicked, and stepped to first and held onto the ball.  Since Smolik had not stepped off first, by rule he needed to throw the ball to first.
After striking out the next batter, Smolik gave up a single to plate the only run of the day.

West’s best chance to score came in the fourth.  Senior Tommy Walker started the inning with a single to center.  Brosky followed with what appeared to be a base hit in the hole between third and short.  But North Olmsted’s shortstop ranged deep in the hole, grabbed the hot, two hop grounder, jumped, spun in the air, and threw a strike to the second baseman covering second for the out.  The second baseman than turned the double play to throw out Brosky at first.   The next two Longhorn batters reached base—on catcher’s interference and an error—but the Longhorns were unable to capitalize. 

Lutheran West got a sensational play of their own.  In the top of the seventh with a runner on second and one out, Rainey hit a fly ball to the gap in right center.  Senior right fielder Justin Keating sprinted to his right and laid out at the last possible second, and with full extension was able to catch the ball as he slammed into the ground.  Keating then flipped the ball to junior centerfielder Josh Cales and doubled the runner off second base to end the inning.

West travels to Columbia for a huge showdown of Stripes Division leaders on Monday. First pitch is scheduled for 5pm.
Wed 3/30/16
L, 8-7
Fri 4/1/16
W, 10-9
Tue 4/5/16
W, 9-1
Wed 4/6/16
W, 7-2
Tue 4/12/16
L, 8-5
Wed 4/13/16
W, 10-3
Thu 4/14/16
W, 5-3
Fri 4/15/16
W, 5-2
Mon 4/18/16
W, 2-0
Tue 4/19/16
W, 12-2
Thu 4/21/16
W, 8-1
Fri 4/22/16
L, 10-3
Sat 4/23/16
L, 1-0
Mon 4/25/16
W, 7-0
Tue 4/26/16
W, 8-6
Wed 4/27/16
W, 4-0
Watch Replay
2016 Coach Trey Lamb
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2016 Varsity Baseball
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Lutheran West
3850 Linden Road
Rocky River, Ohio 44116-4099

Phone: 440.333.1660
Fax: 440.333.1729

Acts 3:6-8 I don’t have much, but what I have I give to you:  In the name of Jesus-Walk!  The man jumped up leaping, dancing and praising God!