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Crestwood 6, Lutheran West 1
By Mark Fenske  | staff
Wednesday, May 15, 2019   |  box score

CRESTWOOD --  Lutheran West lost in the Sectional Finals for the first time since 2015 as they were on the short end of a 6-1 score on Wednesday.  With senior John Smolik unable to play due to strep throat, West had to face the unenviable task of traveling to Crestwood and play their first playoff game without their ace. 

West out hit the host Red Devils 9-7, but struggled with runners in scoring position all day, and lost in the only column that matters—runs. The Longhorns were a combined 2 for 10 with runners in scoring position and left the bases loaded in the first, second, and seventh innings.  

The worst of it came in the seventh.  With LW down 6-0 sophomore Jake Gross walked to start the inning.  Then junior Mike Montie singled to left.  After a fly out to center and a pop up to second, junior Ryan Szczepinski was hit by a pitch—for the second time in the game— to load the bases.  Sophomore Trey DeCicco was then hit on the elbow for what should have forced Gross in from third and posted LW’s first run of the game.  The home plate umpire, eager to insert himself into the post-game article, refused to allow DeCicco to go to first base, saying that DeCicco had “not attempted to get out of the way of the pitch.” It would have been the fourth batter in the game that the Crestwood pitcher had beaned had the umpire not overruled the HBP. DeCicco retreated to the plate and promptly singled in Gross from third on the next pitch. The game then ended when freshman Ed Ramos hit a screaming line drive back to the pitcher that was caught in self-defense.

Baseball fans familiar with MLB history may recognize the rarely enforced rule that the umpire used in declining to allow DeCicco first base was famously invoked by umpire Harry Wendelstedt to keep LA Dodger Don Drysdale’s scoreless innings streak alive in 1968 on his way to a then MLB record 58 scoreless innings in a row. 

Defensively, West likely played their best game of the year, only allowing one batter to reach base that shouldn’t have all game. 
Junior Mike Montie (L, 2-3) held Crestwood in check for the first three innings on the mound but began to tire in the fourth, giving up three runs in the inning and allowing Crestwood to hold a 4-0 lead going into the fifth.  Sophomore Zach Hammer-Huber gave up two runs in the fifth before posting a scoreless sixth. 
Tue 3/26
W, 5-3
Wed 3/27
L, 22-6
Thu 3/28
L, 21-1
Mon 4/1
Tue 4/2
W, 5-3
Wed 4/3
W, 9-8
Thu 4/4
L, 9-2
Mon 4/8
W, 20-1
Tue 4/9
W, 10-1
Thu 4/11
W, 5-0
Fri 4/12
W, 11-9
Mon 4/15
Tue 4/16
L, 4-3
Wed 4/17
L, 14-13
Thu 4/18
L, 7-6
Tue 4/23
W, 15-10
Wed 4/24
W, 11-1
Thu 4/25
L, 5-0
Fri 4/26
Mon 4/29
Tue 4/30
Thu 5/2
Fri 5/3
Tue 5/7
L, 13-0
Wed 5/8
W, 4-1
Thu 5/9
W, 13-12
Wed 5/15
L, 6-1
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2019 Coach Trey Lamb
2011 through current
2019 Varsity Baseball
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Lutheran West
3850 Linden Road
Rocky River, Ohio 44116-4099

Phone: 440.333.1660
Fax: 440.333.1729

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