Baseball: Lincoln-Way West pounds out 15 hits, clubs Homewood-Flossmoor 11-5
By Pat Disabato email@example.com April 4, 2013 8:20PM
Homewood-Flossmoor starting pitcher Teddy Romas. | John Smierciak~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 6, 2013 6:22AM
In 2012, Lincoln-Way West won 24 games and a regional championship with five sophomores in the lineup.
If the start to this season is any indication, bigger and better things are in store for the Warriors.
West upped its mark to 5-1 Thursday, downing host Homewood-Flossmoor 11-5 in a SouthWest Suburban crossover.
The No. 9 Warriors pounded out 15 hits, with Luke Morgan and Zach Speaker leading the attack with three hits apiece. Jake Robbins (2-for-5, 2 RBI), Connor Hogan (2-for-4) and Jake Mahy (2-for-2) also contributed multihit performances for West.
“Zach and Luke have been swinging the bat really well,” West coach Jake Zajc said of his two juniors. “We have great team chemistry and great attitudes. We’re hoping to take the next step this year.”
Morgan not only starred at the plate, he also came up big on the mound.
H-F cut a 6-2 deficit to 6-5 and had the tying and go-ahead runs on base with two outs in the fifth inning.
Zajc brought in Morgan in relief of starter Steve Skolarz, who labored through 42/3 innings.
Morgan struck out Nick Relli looking at a fastball to end the threat and preserve the lead. Morgan struck out five over 21/3 innings.
“I love the pressure,” Morgan said of coming in with the game on the line. “It’s fun. I just come in and focus on throwing strikes.”
The Warriors tacked on five runs in the seventh, with a two-run double by Robbins and a sacrifice fly by Javier Montalvo highlighting the outburst.
It was a sloppy performance by the Vikings (3-3), who committed five errors.
“We kicked the ball around too much,” H-F coach Todd Sippel said. “We have a lot of inexperience. But I like how we showed fight, getting back in the game. We had a chance to tie it and even take the lead.”
The Warriors scored three runs in the first inning, compliments of two Vikings miscues and a double by Speaker that drove in two.
H-F scored single runs in the first and second innings, with Jacob Klemp doubling home Jesse Forestell (2-for-2, 2 walks, 2 RBI) and Relli scoring Pat Sheehan with a two-bagger that cut it to 3-2.
A sacrifice fly by Tyler Kopp and an RBI double by Mahy in the third upped West’s lead to 5-2. A run-scoring single by Nick Andrade in the fifth made it 6-2.
“If we keep hitting the way we’ve been and pitching the way we’ve been pitching, we can go deep in the playoffs,” Morgan said.