By TIM KOELBLE
11:18 PM EDT, March 29, 2011
They found the holes and they found the fences.
When it was all over, the Mercersburg Academy baseball team had taken 13 hits, seven walks and three hit batsmen and combined everything into a 16-1 five-inning win over St. Maria Goretti on Tuesday.
The Blue Storm picked up the Independent Schools Private League victory with three home runs and many doubles that found gaps.
“They got the hits and we’re just in an offensive slump,” said Goretti coach Duane Myers. “We put the ball in play, but we just can’t find the holes.”
On the other hand, Mercersburg (4-1) appears well-oiled in the early season.
Sophomore leadoff batter Lorenzo Vasquez opened three-run rallies in the first and fourth innings. He also slammed a two-run home run in the second off Goretti lefty Connor Grimsley.
“He’s a good one and only a sophomore,” said Blue Storm coach Karl Resiner of Vasquez.
In the offseason, Vasquez, of Brooklyn, N.Y., played in the same Youth Services League as did Manny Ramirez.
To round out the performance, Mercersburg trotted out Will Levangie, coming off Tommy John surgery and making his first start after three relief innings on a recent Florida trip.
Levangie allowed only four hits, struck out four and kept the ball over the plate, not walking anyone.
“We’re blessed with some good pitching,” said Reisner of his five-man rotation, which includes Hagerstown native Christian Binford, who was the designated hitter Tuesday and had two hits.
Hanging tough and down only 4-0, the Gaels fell behind 7-0 in the fourth when Grimsley allowed a two-run home run to Matt Timoney and a solo shot to Tucker Sandercock.
Goretti (1-6) managed its lone run in its half of the fourth.
Ryan Kinter singled, stole second and went to third on a groundout. He scored when Casey Bartholomew sent a smash off third baseman Matt MacMahon’s glove.
The game was shortened in the fifth when Mercersburg scored nine runs. The Blue Storm had five doubles, three walks and three hit batters as they sent 14 batters to the plate.
“We’ve just got to keep our heads up,” said Myers. “On Monday and today, we had balls dropping between fielders and made bad relay decisions. We’ve got to improve our communication.”
Bartholomew had two of Goretti’s four hits.
Mercersburg 16, St. Maria Goretti 1
Mercersburg 310 39 — 16 13 0
Goretti 000 10 — 1 4 2
Levangie and Rodgers. Grimsley, Roth (5) and Bartholomew. WP — Levagnie. LP — Grimsley. HR — MA: Vasquez (2nd, none on), Timoney (4th, one on), Sandercock (4th, none on).
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