For the third time in four games to start the season, Detroit U-D Jesuit boys baseball took to the road, this time falling to Grosse Pointe South on Monday evening, 7-4.
While the season is young, a troubling trend arose during U-D Jesuit’s loss that head coach Glenn Ross wants to squash.
“We cut (South’s) lead to 5-4 in the fifth inning and had bases loaded with two outs, but grounded out,” Ross said. “We just need to focus on key situations.
Admitting his team needs to capitalize on its plethora of baserunners, Ross noted that it’s a mentality. Focus was an issue throughout the game as U-D Jesuit stranded at least two baserunners in five innings, totaling 13 left on base for the game.
U-D Jesuit finished with 10 hits to South’s eight, but couldn’t seem to put hits together with runners in scoring position.
“We tell our players that you need to be able to focus in key situations,” Ross said. “The biggest thing is to accept the outcome. If I get a hit, I get a hit. If I don’t I don’t.”
Ross believes that if his team takes the mental pressure off those key situations and accepts the outcome either way, they’ll play a more relaxed style of baseball which will equate to more runs. Key in-game situations will be a focus of upcoming practices.
Nasir Fredricks and Dominic Rybicki led U-D Jesuit (2-2) with two hits each. Ben Williamson got the start on the mound, going five innings and striking out three, which was good enough to keep U-D Jesuit in the game before handing the ball over to Alex Compton who struck out one and allowed two runs over two innings.
Anthony DerManulian smacked a three-run home run in the first inning for South (4-0). Joe Naporano, Jacob Hinkle, Joe Dimambro and Cam Shook each notched an RBI.
U-D Jesuit will get a chance to bounce back at home on Wednesday evening against Detroit Catholic Central.
“(Catholic Central) is fundamentally sound,” Ross said. “They pitch well and play good defense. We’ll need to be at our best (on Wednesday).”
Birmingham Groves 3, Madison Heights Bishop Foley 2 (10 inn.): Roger Motley pitched five innings, allowing no hits and no runs while striking out four, but didn’t earn the decision for Groves (2-0). Matt Bachard earned the win, going 4⅔ innings with six strikeouts and one unearned run allowed, Harrison Cole was 2-for-3 with two walks and two runs scored, Chaise Ford hit a solo home run and Aerik Joe was 1-for-2 with an RBI and two walks. Ben Alderson pitched seven innings for Bishop Foley (3-2), allowing one unearned run on five hits and he struck out 10. He was also 2-for-4 at the plate with a double.