CROWN POINT — Location. Location. Location.
Simply, Lake Central junior pitcher Zack Dobos had his location, and several Crown Point pitchers couldn’t find it with a GPS. Dobos threw four shutout innings to help L.C. to a 10-4 win over host Crown Point on Tuesday in a Duneland Athletic Conference game.
Dobos worked quickly while the Indians (4-0, 2-0) built a 10-0 lead. He allowed just one hit and struck out four.
“I wanted to go out there and throw my best because I know some people on their team,” Dobos said. “They’re good, and I just wanted to beat them because it was the DAC. I grew up with some of them.”
L.C. coach Mike Swartzentruber’s only regret was not letting Dobos work the fifth inning to possibly finish the game in five innings.
“You’re trying to get some other guys some work,” Swartzentruber said. “He threw 80-some pitches his first game. Not that he can’t do it, but we have to have some other guys be able to get some outs at some point this year so you’re getting guys a little work there.”
Everything was working for Dobos against the Bulldogs.
“He was working ahead, throwing strikes, changing speeds,” Swartzentruber said. “He looked good. He looked sharp.”
Dobos, who improved his mark to 2-0, said it helped that he was able to pitch with a 6-0 lead in the second inning.
“I was confident that we were going to win, and I just kept going and throwing strikes,” he said.
L.C. erupted for six runs in the second inning off starter Marek Bauner, highlighted by a two-run homer by Conner Hoffman. Ray Hilbrich had two hits in the uprising, including a two-run single.
“I had two strikes and just tried to put it in play to work the opposite field,” Hilbrich said. “It worked out.”
L.C.’s Hunter Zahorsky added a two-run single in the fourth for a 9-0 lead, and Conner Tamaic drove in a run in the fifth with a single.
“We’ve hit the ball well of late,” Swartzentruber said. “It’s only four games, but we’ve come out swinging the bat. The guys have bought into what we’re trying to do offensively with our approach.”
Krischtin Beebe, Evan Georgas and Andrew Loewe followed on the hill for C.P.
“We didn’t locate as well as (Dobos) did, so we have to get better and we have to learn from it,” C.P. coach Steve Strayer said. “We’ll go (Wednesday) and see what we can do. … We fell behind on counts. We missed some pitches, and they just teed off on the fastball. We have to be able to hit our spots a little better.”
Josh Lindeman worked the final two-plus inning for the C.P, and he didn’t allow a hit.
“He threw well,” Strayer said. “He located his breaking ball and spotted his fastball. He did a nice job.”
Bauner doubled and scored for C.P. in a two-run fifth, and Gene Kolarik and Jake Defries added RBI-singles in the sixth inning.
Crown Point plays at Lake Central on Wednesday, and Strayer said his squad will be ready.
“We have a deep pitching staff,” he said. “We have enough pitchers. We should be OK, but on Thursday and Friday we may be running out.”