Varsity baseball starts off season strong

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photo by Grace Hilton

Sophomore Ryan Foscolo winds up to hit the pitch. He has had 11 hits and six runs. This is is second year on varsity, as he joined as a freshmen.

It is not the first time the boys varsity baseball team left Lake Brantley with zero runs. Last season, they won 8–0. This season, on March 7, they won 3-0, giving the team a 83% overall record, and what they hope to be a lengthy run in the postseason.

With five wins and only one loss, there are high expectations for the boys to keep this streak up. Last year, they started their season off rough with four losses by the sixth game, with a tough tournament schedule to start the year. For the final part of the season, however, they managed to build up a seven-game win streak, until ultimately losing to Stoneman Douglas in the semifinals.

“[This] makes us pretty confident. We’re gelling as a team right now and this is something we can keep it going for the rest of the year,” junior Austin Jacobs said. “Its the little things and we all just keep it consistent.”

Mostly consisting of returning players, they continued the win streak into the current season with the first game against University High School ending 10-0. New players, junior Brayden Toro and senior Connor Spelman, neither of which were on JV, introduced themselves by earning one hit each. Toro pitched for the team for the first time and struck out nine out of fourteen batters.

In the next two games, the boys beat St. Cloud and Lyman High School 16-6 and 13-1, respectively. Several former-JV players contributed points to each score. One new varsity player, junior Clinton Pollack, pitched against Lyman, striking out two of four batters. Senior Luis Rivero had five runs for both games combined, followed by returning varsity player, sophomore Ryan Foscolo, with four runs.

“Doing pretty well to start off helped me with my initial confidence, letting me know that my approach was working,” Rivero said. “For the team, it let us know that what we worked on in practice was paying off and reinforced our system.”

The first loss of the season was a close game against Lake Mary High School with a final score of 5-4.

The loss did encourage improvement, because Lyman High School lost to the team 10-6, three of which came from Jacobs. The team performed well all around, with Rivero earning a triple, junior Jeremiah Stewart striking out ten of seventeen batters, and Spelman having eight put-outs.

Lake Brantley was faced twice in a row for a head-to-head, just as they did the previous year. For the first game on Tuesday, it started strong with a home run by Toro, bringing home Jacobs, all in the first inning. The following innings were marked by exceptional pitches from Toro and senior Garrett Bauman, striking out a total of ten batters. With another run from Jacobs in the sixth, the first game ended 3-0 The following game on Friday leveled out the competition with a loss for the team, 1-0. 

During spring break, the team continued their season by participating in the Florida League High School Invitational “The Classic,” starting against Normal University at Sanford Memorial Stadium and ending with a win against Martin County.

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