Baseball: Vianney at DeSmet
Two top-flight baseball teams from Catholic high schools in the archdiocese matched up April 24, with St. John Vianney topping DeSmet Jesuit 6-1 behind dominant pitching, timely hitting and solid defense.
While DeSmet, 12-6, suffered the loss, the team played well during a well-attended game at their field in Creve Coeur. Third baseman Pat Hoff made a nice play in the first inning and center fielder Brandon Gutzler made two outstanding plays, including crashing into the flexible outfield fence to rob Vianney's Jake Walters of a home run in the sixth inning
Vianney's Aaron Bossi, who has signed to play at Parkland College in Champaign, Ill., dominated on the mound with six strikeouts. He struck out three batters in the fourth inning, getting each on sharp curves.
"As the game went on I lost velocity and became more comfortable with offspeed pitches, keeping them off balance," Bossi said. He added that he has confidence in the team defense because "they never let me down."
Vianney coach Scott Brown said Bossi "stepped up, threw strikes and worked ahead of people. He mixed up his pitches. Anytime you do that it leads to success."
Brown also cited Pete Spradlin's clutch double to the fence with two outs in the third inning to drive in three runs."He's been doing that a lot, staying within himself, not trying to do too much," the coach said.
Credit also goes to the defense, he said, calling the victory "a team effort."
Shortstop Nick Ulrich drove in another run in the third with a double, third baseman Matt Brown drove in a run in the fifth and catcher Jack Klages had a triple in the sixth to add another tally for Vianney. DeSmet's Chris Arends had a home run over the fence in left to score DeSmet's run.
The win put Vianney, which went to the Final Four of the state tournament last year, at 16-4 so far this year. The team lost three of four games earlier in the season before getting on track with wins over St. Louis University High School, Francis Howell, Edwardsville and Parkway West. The team plays its next game at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday, May 1, at home against CBC.
Vianney coach Brown admitted to the "little hiccup" when the team "felt too good about ourselves and forgot what it took to win." Now, he said, the players are settling into their role and not trying to do too much by themselves.
DeSmet had won 15-2 over St. Louis University High School April 23, its fourth win in a row. The team plays SLUH again at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 1, at SLUH.
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