Geneseo completed the sweep of NIB 12 foe Sterling April 26 at home with a 4-2 victory in varsity baseball action.
“Anytime you can sweep a series it is always nice, especially against a rival like Sterling,” said head coach Steve Brucher. “It was nice to win all three because it is tough to beat a team three times.”
After a scoreless first where sophomore pitcher Zach?Alexander got out of a bases loaded, no-out jam without allowing a run, the Leafs jumped out on the Golden Warriors in the second as they drove in three runs for the 3-0 lead.
“For Zach to get out of that jam really boosted his confidence and hurt the morale on the other bench.?That was really huge,” said Brucher. “I am sure he was a little rattled, but Zach has pretty good composure on the mound, and having Michael Daniels behind the plate helps. Zach just made quality pitches to get out of a jam.”
Sterling got one back in the third as the Golden Warriors scored one run for a 3-1 score. The Leafs countered with one run in the bottom of the fifth to go up 4-1, while Sterling pushed another run across the plate in the top of the sixth.
Geneseo managed to hold off the Warriors in the top of the seventh to earn the win.
“I thought we played a very clean game defensively, which was another encouraging sign,”?said Brucher. “You have to put the ball in play offensively and make routine plays on defense and we did both of those things. We took advantage of Sterling’s mistakes and made routine plays.”
Alexander recorded the win on the hill for the Leafs as he allowed six hits, two runs and struck out eight in six innings. Ryan Williams recorded his ninth save in one inning and only allowed one hit.
Williams led the way for the Leafs at the plate with two hits, while Rayce Singbush (1 RBI), Derek Mitchell, David Behrens (1 RBI) and Drew DeCap (1 RBI) chipped in one hit apiece with a double from Mitchell.
The Leafs (18-9 overall and 7-2 in the NIB 12) will be on the road next when they take on LaSalle-Peru at 5 p.m. May 7.
“Streator is two-time defending conference champ and L-P is currently in first place,” said Brucher of what is up next for the Leafs. “Our plan is to compete and play 21 outs, and hopefully have good outings from our pitchers. We need to keep doing what we are doing at the plate because we have been making big strides lately.”