Seven Is Heaven
Big Fifth Inning Propels Jays to 7-1 Win Over Raiders
7-1, 7-1, 7-0, 7-2. In four of their past five games, the Blue Jays won by pushing seven runs across home plate. Jesuit’s twenty-eight runs are seven times as many as their opponents’ four runs.
The Jays’ explosive bats were on full display — ringing up 27 hits — in a trio of games, two of them district contests, played this past weekend at John Ryan Stadium. With rain hanging around all week long and forcing a re-shuffling of the Catholic League schedule, pretty much all the teams, including Jesuit, had a week’s rest. The Blue Jays (22-7 overall; 6-2 in district) made the most of their down time, hitting whiffle balls, lifting weights, and practicing indoors on the third floor of the Roussel Building. When they finally got the chance to play ball, Jesuit whiffed their opponents.
It was just like John Ryan ’70 himself told the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon right before the team began warm-ups: “You control your own destiny,” said Ryan, who visited the Jays in their dugout, delivered a good pep talk, and then stuck around to watch the Blue and White persevere against the team that beat them, 6-5, in extra innings in round one of district play.
On Friday, the Jays shut out Holy Cross, 7-0; on Saturday, the Patriots from John Ehret went down, 7-1; and on Sunday, Jesuit used a big fifth inning to score five runs, then added two more in the seventh to wallop Archbishop Rummel, 7-1.
Brandon Briuglio started on the mound against the Raiders and pitched three innings, giving up four hits and the lone run. Logan Hornung came on in relief and pitched a no-hitter in the final four innings, striking out three batters. Hornung picked up the win to improve his record to 2-1. Neither pitcher walked a single Raider.
“Today was just one of those days you look forward to in a big situation,” said Horning. “You obviously want to come through for your teammates, and I’m glad we got the job done. Defense played solid behind everybody today. The stakes were high and I couldn’t ask for anything more.”
“I can’t say enough about the job Logan Hornung did,” said Coach Joey Latino. “He throws strikes on the first pitch and he does it as well as anybody we have on the staff. He understands his role, he knows he’s not going to overpower anybody, and he lets his defense play behind him.”
With Rummel leading 1-0 after the third inning, the Jays (who were the visitors) scored five runs in the top of the fifth, which spelled disaster for the Raiders. It started with Dan Edmund walking, designated hitter Myles Blunt singling, and Harrison Daste laying down a perfect bunt — an “outstanding bunt” according to Coach Latino — to load the bases with one out.
Hayden Fuentes draws a walk and Edmund walks home to tie the game, 1-1. Alex Galy singles, scoring Blunt (2-1), and Briuglio singles, scoring Daste (3-1). Ben Hess hits a sacrifice fly to score Fuentes from third base (4-1). Galy, who was on second base, steals third base, and when the Raiders’ pitcher balks, Galy is sent home (5-1).
The Jays had eight hits against the Raiders with Hess and Scott Crabtree each accounting for two hits. One of Crabtree’s hits in the seventh inning was a two-run double.
“I feel that as a pitcher I owe that to my batters now that they’ve done their job, it’s my turn to back them up on that,” said Hornung, a senior right-hander who added that a cushion of several runs doesn’t mean he can relax. “I don’t think we ever take our foot of the pedal, but it makes my job that much easier. I look forward to these situations and it’s hard not to picture yourself in it. This is what you live for as a pitcher.”
Coach Latino describes Hornung as “a little bit of everything. We’ve used him as a closer and as a starter.” About a week ago, he and Hornung talked about expectations and the senior’s role in district play.
“Typical of Logan Hornung, he said ‘Coach, whatever you need me to do, I’ll do it.’ And he’s doing it,” said Coach Latino.
As blue and sunny a Sunday was for the Jays and Raiders, Jesuit’s Saturday evening non-district game against John Ehret unfolded in a light drizzle. The rain never let up until after the game, just in time for Senior Night hoopla when 12 Blue Jays — 11 players and one hard-working manager in Chris Caldarera — who are on the cusp of graduating are introduced and honored, along with their parents. Senior Day is an annual ritual that the honorees look forward to as much as the underclassmen on the team if only because everyone, players, coaches, and parents included, enjoy a delicious home-cooked dinner served under the dry confines of the Wally Pontiff, Jr. Pavilion.
Before demolishing a couple of trays of baked lasagna, the Jays were thrashing the Patriots, 7-1. Myles Blunt started on the mound for the Jays and went four and one-third innings, yielding all three of the Patriots’ hits and the one run scored in the top of the first. Blunt, who had four strike outs, picked up the win to improve his record to 5-1. Mason Mayfield pitched one and two-thirds innings, striking out one batter. David Boh finished off the Patriots in the seventh inning, striking out the final batter.
The Jays had eight hits against John Ehret. Brandon Briuglio notched two hits, including a double, and two RBIs. Alex Galy had two singles and Ben Hess had a single and a triple with two RBIs.
Jesuit and Holy Cross played Friday night (April 17, as scheduled) with the Jays racking up 11 hits and pummeling the Tigers, 7-0. Read about the Jesuit – Holy Cross game.
Jesuit closes out district play this week with two games. The first is against Archbishop Shaw on Tuesday, April 21 at 7 p.m. at John Ryan Stadium. This game will be streamed live on sportsnola.com. The TV replay will be aired on Friday, April 24, at 5:30 p.m. on WHNO-TV, Channel 20.
The Jays final district game is against Brother Martin on Thursday, April 23 at 7 p.m. at UNO’s field.
N.O. Advocate: The little things add up as Jesuit tops Rummel 7-1
SportsNola.com: Jesuit avenges loss to Rummel to extend win streak