December 18, 2014

Elyria
Cloudy
29°F
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Hot Stove: Vermilion Impact racks up 22nd straight win

GRAFTON — You could say Vermilion Impact knows a thing or two about winning.

Twenty-two wins in a row would seem to be a pretty good indication of that, anyway.

Vermilion needed just an hour and 15 minutes to get that 22nd win, disposing of the Stow Beef O’ Brady’s Cubs 11-0 in a five-inning mercy-rule-shortened Class H (age 10) Ohio Hot Stove district championship Sunday at Reservoir Park.

Pitchers Sean Saterlee and Hunter Eitenne combined to strike out 11 batters while the offense struck for three runs in the first inning and five in the second to build an early 8-0 lead.

“We didn’t know if this other team was good because we hadn’t played them this season, but I felt confident we were going to win as soon as I stepped out on the field,” said Eitenne, who caught the first three innings before coming on to pitch in the fourth. “I was a little nervous when I started pitching because they were at the start of their lineup, but our offense did such a good job of scoring runs I didn’t have to worry if I gave up a run. I could just relax and throw strikes.”

Nick Werth led the Vermilion offense with two hits and two runs scored. He was one of eight Impact players to score at least once.

“I kinda surprised myself that I hit the ball so hard today,” Werth said. “It was exciting to win today now we have to keep playing Impact baseball to keep winning.”

Vermilion will play in a regional semifinal Saturday at 10 a.m. in Grafton.

“The boys played strong today, hit well, pitched well and played great defense,” Vermilion coach Jim Wells said. “These boys and their parents are dedicated. They want it. Their parents want it and the coaches want it. Everything we do is a total team effort.”

Class GG (age 11)

Firelands Big Red 22, Olmsted Falls Bulldogs 6

Grant Price scored four runs and Nate Damron had three hits as Firelands improved to 22-1.

Despite the large margin of victory, Big Red coach Chris Yoby said his team didn’t necessarily bring their best game to the ballpark.

“We were somewhat focused but we’ve played better,” he said. “I think the heat got to us and some of the guys might have been looking forward to the county championship game on Wednesday. We made plays we need to make, but we’re hoping to improve next game.”

Price, the leadoff hitter, had a first-inning single and walks in his next four plate appearances.

“I think we could have fielded better and maybe had a little bit better hitting,” Price said. “We made some mistakes we normally don’t make today. I think everyone lost focus a little bit because of the heat.”

The Big Red had 10 hits, including doubles by Vince Morales and Logan Howington.
Damron knows what his teammates need to do in the county championship and beyond: “We just have to keep getting singles and playing good defense.”

Class G (12)

Columbia Jakobsky Plumbing 10, Medina Sharks 5

After splitting two regular-season meetings, Columbia won the season series with the Sharks and with it a Class G district championship.

Coach Mel Grills said his team, which improved to 10-12, is peaking at just the right time.

“The boys really came to play,” he said. “We’re two evenly matched teams. We hit the ball and caught the ball today so here we are. This is the first year we haven’t had two teams in Columbia Station. We have 14 kids on the roster so that means there are 10 kids who have to sub out and sit at times. It’s been tough at times but the kids have really learned how to play together.”

Bailey Coleman went 4-for-4 to provide a spark at the top of the lineup.

“We made a lot of good plays and played as a team,” Coleman said. “It gives me pressure sometimes batting first, but I just think of something happy, relax and hit the ball, and hopefully it goes somewhere where they can’t catch it.”

Carson Heidecker scored two runs and came on in relief in the fifth inning and pitched the rest of the way.

“When I come in to pitch in the middle of the game it’s tough to get into the proper mindset,” he said. “You just have to be consistent. I think if we practice hard this week we can find a way to keep winning.”

Trevor Warren started the game for Columbia and struck out six in four innings before Hot Stove Class G rules forced him to give the ball to Heidecker.

“Pitching is hard because you never know if you’re going to have a good day or a bad day,” Warren said. “I will admit I had butterflies in my stomach before the game. After I threw my first strike I felt really good. I only threw like around 41 pitches in four innings. I wanted to go back out there. I was mad our league rules said you can only pitch four innings. It’s kinda scary watching everyone else pitch but it was so exciting when we won the game.”

Class E (age 15-18)

Plain Local Eagles 19, North Ridgeville Rays 1

Class EE (age 15-16)

  • Vermilion Sailors 4, Firelands Falcons 1
  • Plain Local Young & A 4, North Ridgeville Rangers 3
  • Grafton General Plug 7, Spencer Pirates 5

Class F (age 14)

  • South Amherst/Firelands Raptors 11, Columbia Cottom’s 10
  • Midview North Cavanaugh 27, Keystone Vantage 1
  • Buckeye Knotts Family Dining 15, North Ridgeville Rangers 5

Class FF (age 13)

  • Midview North Ross 12, Elyria Gladiators 6
  • Columbia Morgan Trucking 5, Garfield Thunder 4
  • Medina Indians 5, Columbia Scott’s Party Rental 1

Class G (age 12)

Columbia Jakobsky Plumbing 10, Medina Sharks 5

Class GG (age 11)

  • Firelands Big Red 22, Olmsted Falls Bulldogs 6
  • North Akron Orioles 13, Firelands Fierce 2
  • Buckeye GMP 12, Vermilion Sailors 5
  • Columbia Kile Construction 7, Ellet Indians 0

Class H (age 10)

  • South Amherst Firelands 17, Grafton Branham Automotive 16
  • Vermilion Impact 11, Stow Beef O’Brady’s Cubs 0
  • Wellington Rampage 10, North Olmsted Chambers Funeral Home 0

Class HH (age 9)

  • Buckeye Carter Lumber 17, South Amherst/Firelands 5
  • Keystone Hot Stove 16, Keystone Kinkaid Kallers 9
  • Wellington Dukes 17, North Ridgeville Bullfrogs 7
  • Grafton Marco’s Pizza 16, Columbia Jake’s 252 Garage 0

Farm Major

Medina Swarm 10, North Ridgeville Aquatic Dream 7

Contact Todd Shapiro at 329-7135 or ctsports@chroniclet.com.