Friday, July 11, 2014

Crusader Baseball finishes regular season strong

from today's Waukesha Freeman - 

CMH wins with big 1st inning over West
Crusaders score 12 runs in first

CMH 18
Waukesha West 2 (5 innings) 

By Tom Badger, 
Freeman Correspondent 

WAUKESHA — It was pretty close to a perfect ending for Matthew Schulze and the Catholic Memorial High School boys baseball team.

It was a perfect ending for its coach Tim Gotzler.

Memorial jumped on Waukesha West for 12 runs in the first inning en route to an 18-2 victory in the Classic 8 Conference season finale at Infinity Fields Thursday. The Crusaders finished league action at 14-7, one game behind Arrowhead, who beat Waukesha South Thursday to lock up the conference championship.

Schulze, a senior right-hander, took a perfect game into the fourth inning before a leadoff walk and two-run single spoiled both the perfect game and no-hit bid.

“This was a best way to finish because we were able to get all our seniors on field at the same time in the fifth inning, something I wanted to do all season,” Gotzler said. “This was by far the best season
 that we’ve had in my time here and the most fun. From here, we want to be a tough out in the (state) tournament.”

Memorial was a real tough out for West in the first inning.

Consecutive singles by seniors Zach Fridl, David Mcleod and Matthew Rechner loaded the bases. After senior Jake Shomin was hit by a pitch, junior Eric Brown doubled to score two runs to give CMH a quick 3-0 lead.

West’s starting freshman lefthander Trey Grassel hit a rough patch by walking the next four batters and fell behind 6-0 — still without an out.

After a Wolverine pitching change, Fridl ripped a run scoring single and Mcleod followed with a sacrifice fly to right field for an 8-0 lead.

Rechner doubled over the head of West’s center fielder for a 10-0 lead — still with only one out.

“To Memorial’s credit, they had three hits in a row right away,” West coach Chad Montez said. “In
 that inning, there was only one error, but other than that, everything was either a hit, a walk or a hit-by-pitch.” 

The inning finally ended at 12-0 when West junior catcher Nate Labott tagged out junior courtesy runner Nick Stortz, who broke for home after a pitch bounced away from Labott.

“We always talk about putting up crooked numbers and we did it again tonight,” Gotzler said. “We’ve scored 10 or more runs in an inning a couple of times this season.”

In the first inning, Memorial had seven hits while picking up five walks, a hit batsman and
 an error.

Memorial tacked on three more runs in the second and third innings, highlighted by a run-scoring single by Mcleod and a run scoring triple by Rechner in the second, and a two-run Mcleod double in the third.

Rechner wound up going 3 for 4 in the game.

“Last year, all I was doing was going up and trying to hit home runs,” Rechner said. “This year, it’s not that way at all. I’ve taken a different approach at the plate and just concentrating
 on hitting it hard.”

Meanwhile, Schulze retired the first nine Wolverines he faced.

In the top of the fourth, West’s junior pinch hitter Austin Rohrer was walked when Schulze’s 3-2 pitch
 was low in the dirt.

“I was thinking about it (a perfect game or no-hitter) a little bit, but I just tried to keep playing my game,” Schulze said. “It didn’t quite work out, but the main thing is that we won the game.”

Later in the inning, West junior Brad Esposito singled to right scoring Rohrer and senior Mitch Hauser, who also walked.

It was West’s first and only base hit.

Gotzler said he would have kept Schulze on the mound in the fifth had the no-hitter still been in tact.

Memorial senior Alex Dodd came on to pitch the fifth inning and retired West in order.

Memorial collected 13 hits with the top three in the batting order going a combined 8 for 10.

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