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Trio of St. Henry pitchers combine on 4-hit shutout of Roughriders

April 5, 2013

St. Marys' Mason Gross slides into third base against St. Henry on Thursday. (Staff Photo/Brian Smith)

ST. HENRY — The St. Marys baseball team had one chance to get to St. Henry’s strong pitching staff in the top of the first inning. After that, the Redskin staff teamed up to shut down the Roughrider bats.

St. Henry had three pitchers combine on a four-hit shutout in a 3-0 win over St. Marys on Thursday night at the Wally Post Athletic Complex.

St. Marys loaded the bases with no one out in the first inning, but Ryan Mikesell got out of the jam unscathed. He pitched four scoreless innings before turning it over to the bullpen.

“We loaded the bases with no outs and got nothing and they scored runs with two outs,” St. Marys head coach Dave Huber said. “That’s the difference between winning and losing. Their pitchers did a nice job of keeping us off balance, but we’ve got a lot of work to do. We had our opportunities and just didn’t come through.”

St. Henry relievers Mitchell Stammen and Alex Post combined to go the final three innings without giving up a run.

St. Henry head coach John Dorner is excited about the quality and depth of this year’s staff.

“We’re excited as heck with our pitching staff,” Dorner said. “We feel we have eight young pitchers who can give us a chance to win day in and day out. We really feel this is one of the strongest pitching staffs we’ve ever had.”

Marcus Wagner worked the first four and 1-3 innings for St. Marys, giving up single runs in the first and second innings. He settled down after that and ended up giving up three runs on five hits over 4 and 1-3 innings.

“We’d like his ball to strike ratio to be better, but he did settle down a bit and made fewer pitches as the game went along,” Huber said.

Wagner exited when Jeff Paul singled in a run to make it 3-0 in the bottom of the fifth.

Brandon Coffey worked a scoreless inning and two-thirds. “Brandon came in and did exactly what we expect him to do,” Huber said. “He threw strikes. He kept us in the game.”

St. Marys shotstop Zach Wilker looks in a pop up in shallow left field on Thursday at St. Henry. (Staff Photo/Brian Smith)

St. Marys committed two errors in the game and struggled with runners in scoring position. St. Marys has stranded 32 runners on base in its first three games against exceptional competition.

“We are not a team that is going to score a lot of runs, so we have to make sure we play sound defense and don’t give away runs,” Huber said.

The Riders have played Bellefontaine, LCC and St. Henry. The tough first week continues on Friday and Saturday against two of the best MAC programs in Coldwater and Minster. The Minster game on Saturday will be played at Fifth Third Field in Dayton.

“I know the kids are excited about it and it’s a nice opportunity and hopefully make the best of it,” Huber said. “But right now, we’re worried about Coldwater tomorrow night.”

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