GRIFFITH | Career home run No. 2 for Connor Manous went into the books Tuesday and was swiftly erased by a cancellation from weather.
Karma did not pay him back with another home run, but Manous didn’t need one because he only allowed two hits from the mound Wednesday night.
Manous, a sophomore, outdueled Griffith’s Josh Terzarial as Times No. 2 Munster beat No. 9 Griffith 4-1 in a crisp, 100-minute Northwest Crossroads Conference game.
“I just try to pitch well when I get my name called,” Manous said after hurling a complete game two-hitter with 12 strikeouts and no earned runs to improve his season record to 4-0.
“I wanted to come in and throw strikes and pound the zone and make them hit it.”
Manous had a devastating curveball that he used to induce eight swinging strikeouts and four looking while walking one.
He allowed one-out doubles in the first and second innings and no subsequent hits. He retired the final 11 hitters he faced.
“I just want to keep coming out and competing every game,” Manous said.
The lone run for Griffith (7-6, 4-3) scored when Terzarial, who tossed a six-hitter with six punchouts, reached on an error, moved to third on a pair of balks and scored on an error.
“He’s one of the top two pitchers we’ve seen this year,” Griffith coach Brian Jennings said of Manous. “We hadn’t seen (a curveball) like that. He had that good 12-6 and located it. That, plus an 85-86 mph fastball, and you’re in pretty good shape.”
Munster (13-2, 4-1) loaded the bases in the third but managed one run, on a wild pitch, despite four runners reaching base in the inning. Back-to-back RBI doubles by Alex Del Rio and Joe Bryant accounted for the go-ahead runs in the fifth, and the Mustangs tacked on two runs in the seventh on an RBI double by Joe Jumonville and a sacrifice fly by Del Rio.
The third time was a charm as the teams were supposed to play here Monday but never touched the field due to rain, then played three and a half innings Tuesday at Munster before those were nullified by lightning and rain.
“It finally feels good to get a game in,” Munster coach Bob Shinkan said. “After seeing our fields but then opening the paper the next day and seeing that other teams were able to play because it hit harder in some spots and not in others, it feels good that we didn’t have to back this into next week.”
The teams are set for a rematch today at Munster.
“It was a good, competitive baseball game, but we didn’t match them with the big hits or timely hits,” Jennings said. “Give credit to Connor for that.”