Lima, OH – Barons baseball was able to get through the first weekend of the 2013 ORC Tournament advancing to the final weekend. The Barons had wins over Ohio University Chillicothe 7 to 3 and Ohio University Zanesville by the same score, while their only loss on the weekend was to regular season champion Miami Hamilton, 3 to 0, as MUH starter John Monnig kept the Barons offense off balance all game on way to a no hitter. “Sometimes you just have to tip your cap to the other guy. Monnig threw a great game today. We had a chance early on after two walks in the first inning, but we didn’t capitalize then and never really put anything together again. The shame is that Blumey (Tyler Blumentritt) threw a heck of a game himself. Now, we are up against it. Hopefully we can send a few teams home and get a shot at a title still!” Said Coach Ambroza.
Game 1 vs OU Chillicothe, Senior Codie Roberts threw a complete game, only allowing five hits total. Perhaps, the biggest moment in the game came right away as the Barons loaded the bases in the first with nobody out, after two consecutive strikeouts, Freshman Shortstop Brandon Burke stroked a full count single to the right center gap, plating all three runs. “That at bat was a huge moment for Brandon. He fought off a couple tough pitches, then capitalized on what I believe was a changeup that missed up. Their guy had a chance at the ball, but fortunately for us, it didn’t hang up quite long enough for him to get it. If that ball doesn’t drop for us there, who knows what happens!” Said Ambroza. Roberts was the story from there on, battling his way out of a couple jams to lead the Barons to victory on the mound.
Game 2 vs MU Hamilton, Freshman Tyler Blumentritt started off masterfully. It wasn’t until there were 2 outs in the 3rd that he allowed a runner. Blumentritt, followed by Ryne Jerome held the regular season champions to only 3 runs total for the game. However, their excellent pitching performance was outdone by MU Hamilton hurler John Monnig, who despite some early control problems, held the Barons hitless for the 3-0 shutout victory.
Game 3 vs OU Zanesville, Freshman Brent Bertke started on the mound for the Barons. Much like the previous two games, the Barons pitcher, this time Bertke started the game nearly unhittable. In fact, it wasn’t until the 4th inning that OU Zanesville was able to fight off a fastball down the first base line for their first hit of the game. Unfortunately for the Barons, it came when there were runners on following a walk and an error. OU Zanesville, followed up their first hit, with a 2nd consecutive hit which tied the game at three. Offensively, the Barons had the early lead of 3-0 after stringing a couple singles together. Then, after OU Zanesville had tied it, the Barons answered back themselves with three of their own to extend the lead back to three runs, with the score now 6-3 in the top of the fifth. “I was proud of how the guys answered immediately after Zanesville tied it up with us. Some teams get tight in moments like that, our guys showed a lot of resiliency there.” Said Ambroza. After five strong innings from Bertke, the Barons went to Freshman Matt Youngpeter for the final two innings, clinching the win and berth in to the 2nd weekend of tournament play. “Our depth at pitching really was key today and all weekend long. Roberts, Blumey, Bertke, Jerome, Youngpeter, all of them. I mean, this game here we had Jerome up and ready to close it out had Matt (Youngpeter) struggled. It is a great feeling as coach to know you’ve got options at that all important position of pitcher!” Said Ambroza
Now, the Barons will return to action on Friday, May 10th at 1:00pm vs OU Lancaster at Beavers Field. The Barons went 2&1 vs OU Lancaster in regular season play. The winner of that game will play again immediately after vs the loser of the winners bracket finals, MU Hamilton vs Wright State Lake.