Thorndale, Milano jump start second half of loop with wins
The Eagles opened up the second round of loop play on Tuesday night with a 9-5 road win at Bartlett.
Freshman Toby Sanders earned the win for the Eagles after coming in during the second inning for starter Sam Walker.
Sanders struck out four batters and walked three in five innings worth of work. Jordan Hinistroza closed things out for Milano on the mound in the seventh.
Hinistroza and Matthew Jentsch were big at the plate for the Eagles. Hinistroza was three for four with a home run and a double.
Jentsch was three for three with two doubles. Michael Griffin also did well with the bat, going three for four.
The Eagles used solid defense and focused pitching to get past visiting Granger Lions 4-3 Friday night, according to Eagles head coach Jayce Rasberry.
Milano took a 4-0 lead into the top of the sixth when Granger’s Dylan Barbiaux hit a solo shot over the fence to cut the lead to three.
In the top of the seventh, the first two Lion batters got base hits and then the third was hit by a pitch to load the bases with no outs for Granger. Barbiaux then hit another ball into the right center field gap, scoring two runs.
“They tried to bring the tying run around from first and the relay from center fielder Shawn Mullinix to second baseman Jaxson Robinson was in time to catcher Matthew Jentsch at the plate for the first out and a runner on second,” Rasberry said. “The next hitter doubled as well but we cut the run off at the plate.”
Sanders remained focused and steady, something Rasberry thinks was important in the game.
“We felt that Thomas had come a long way and pitched a great ball game, even though his pitch count was climbing he remained focused and pounded the strike zone,” Rasberry said. “We feel when that kid takes the ball we have a shot to win any ball game were in.”
Facing 32 batters, Sanders only reached three ball counts on four total batters on the night. He struck out seven Granger batters and issued just two walks.
“We are just now finding our groove as a ball club. We have found a focus that we will hopefully only build on,” Rasberry said. “Our kids are hungry and have a fire to compete. We have a very talented district with several teams fighting to get in the playoff hunt. We expect to see good baseball from here on out.”
Sophomore Tyler Miller led a barrage of four home runs with a grand slam and Caleb Saunders twirled a two-hitter as Thorndale bombarded Holland 20-0 to open the second half of district.
The Bulldogs improved to 13-9 overall and 6-1 in District 27A.
Tyler Jordan, Shea Maupin and Saunders all also recorded roundtrippers for the Bulldogs.