Bruins break through offensive woes

Bruins break through at the plate with 56 runs in 3 games

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Bruins break through offensive woes

Josh Bailey at the plate against Mize last week.

Josh Bailey at the plate against Mize last week.

Anna Chris Nicholas

Josh Bailey at the plate against Mize last week.

Anna Chris Nicholas

Anna Chris Nicholas

Josh Bailey at the plate against Mize last week.

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The Bruins stood on the considerably crooked third base line for the National Anthem in what amounted to the district championship against Mize Attendance Center. 

At the end of the game, DSt. Joseph Catholic School baseball players knelt on the same line, crowding together after the loss.

Pullquote Photo

The biggest lesson we learned from the regular season is overcoming adversity, which started with injuries in the offseason”

— Chris Watson

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Said Watson: “That skill of persevering through adversity will be huge in the playoffs.”

There wasn’t much else going on in Mize, a small city about 90 minutes southeast of the St. Joe campus, on that Friday night. So the the town was well represented in the home bleachers. They  bought food and drink from the concession stand roofed by Mize’s starting left fielder. 

“I hope you know you’re in for a fist fight tonight, boys,” Coach Gerard McCall told his team, as he perused the batting cages before the game. 

And, indeed, a fist fight ensued between the two teams. 

The Bruins’ starting pitcher Joe Pearson and Mize’s starting pitcher Tyler Temple battled back and forth, neither giving an inch. 

After four complete innings, the score was tied at zero; neither team could do anything offensively. 

Finally, in the bottom of the fifth inning and with the bases loaded, Mize strung together a pair of hits and took the lead 3-0. 

Photo by Bailey Miler
Freshman Cooper Chaplain at bat against Puckett.

In the top of the seventh inning, the last hope for the Bruins, the team scratched out two baserunners. Junior third baseman Brock Morris reached on a hit, Pearson reached on an error from the shortstop Clay Cook. This brought the tying run to the plate.

But Mize was able to retire the side and win the game 3-0. 

 “There’s not much left to say,” McCall said to his team after the game. “We got to swing the bats.” 

That’s exactly what the Bruins did. 

In their next district game Tuesday against Pelahatchie, the Bruins stomped the Chiefs 20-0. Then on

Wednesday, they won 15-0. 

Freshman Chris Watson, who got his first varsity start that Wednesday in outfield said: “I think we improved a lot from the Pelahatchie series. Guys have started seeing the ball better at the plate, and I think it helped guys’ confidence.”

The offensive explosion is hopefully the boost the team needs as playoffs approach rapidly. 

The Bruins got off to rather slow start to the year, and have hovered around .500 for a majority of the season. But recently, they have won their last three games, so just maybe the Bruins are getting into a rhythm at the right time. 

With no more district games left to play, the Bruins’ seed is sealed: a second place finish. 

Likely, the team will have to travel in a majority of their playoff series, so being able to close games on the road will be critical. 

On Saturday, the Bruins play a double header against Newton County, where they’ll look to avenge a 6-5 lose in their first regular season game of the year. 

If the offense can sustain the production of recent games, and pitchers like Josh Bailey and Joe Pearson can continue their performances on the mound, the Bruins stand a chance of making a run in the playoffs.  

 

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