CRETE | Crete-Monee’s freshmen squad can learn a few things from its varsity counterparts.
While the freshman Warriors trudged through a 12-inning, four-hour affair in the first game of its own doubleheader on Saturday, the Crete-Monee varsity wasted no time in making quick work of Southland Athletic Conference foe Bloom Township in a pair of five-inning defeats of the Blazing Trojans.
Crete won 10-0 in the first game and 13-3 in the nightcap.
“With the way the weather has been, it feels great to come out and get two games in and win both,” said Warriors coach Gene Cahan. “Our pitching was solid today and I really liked the way we swung the bats.”
Crete-Monee (9-3, 5-0) scored eight runs in the first frame of game one and never looked back as senior Kyle Bumpass pitched a complete-game shutout while fanning 12 Blazing Trojans.
After the Warriors' Malik McNeal (sacrifice fly) and Donte Richie (infield single) collected RBIs to put Crete ahead 2-0 in the first inning of game two, Christopher Cockle took the mound and was equally effective.
The senior hurled five innings, scattering seven hits and striking out nine Trojans.
“After a couple of bad games, I just wanted to come out and be effective for my team,” Cockle said. “I just worked on my arm slot and bending my back more and I had better results because of it.”
Before Cockle settled in, Bloom (2-7, 2-3) temporarily enjoyed a close game in the bottom half of the first inning. After Eric Luther led off with a single, he then stole second before scoring on Frankie Herzic’s line-drive single to center field. The Trojans had a chance to tie after Caleb Coulum walked and moved into scoring position by stealing second, but Cockle got Danny Vela to strike out swinging to end the threat.
It was all Crete-Monee after that.
The Warriors erupted for 11 runs over the next three innings while only collecting five hits. After Bloom starting pitcher Nick Carlson was relieved in favor of David Metzner, Crete-Monee was aided greatly by five walks and five errors by the Bloom defense. Luther pitched 1 2/3 of clean baseball to finish out the game for the Trojans.
Leading 5-1 heading into the third frame, the Warriors effectively put the game out of reach with a five-run outburst.
After Richie singled to open the third, Jake Bishop followed with a walk. One out later, Bumpass scored Richie with a double to the center field fence. Bishop and Bumpass later scored on an error and a RBI groundout, respectively. Cockle later reached on an error and scored before Cameron Bass was hit by a pitch and scored on a wild pitch to make it a 10-1 lead.
Tilley and Bass led the Warrior attack with a hit and 3 RBIs apiece.
“We just didn’t get it done today,” said Bloom coach Job Gunderson. “Too many errors and walks, and our bats just weren’t there either.
“We’re a young and inexperienced team, so this is going to happen every now and then. Hopefully we’ll take this as a learning experience and move forward positively.”