Concordia bats come alive with 22 runs in first two wins of the season
The Concordia Stingers baseball team’s hitters have finally awoken from their off-season slumber. The Stingers bats exploded for 22 runs in a doubleheader against the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees on Sept. 16 at home.
In the first game, the Stingers defeated the Gee-Gees 14-4 in five innings due to the 10-run difference mercy rule. The Stingers were down 3-0 after the first inning but stormed back for an 11-run second inning. Second baseman Kyle Hazel, shortstop Bruce Tejada and first baseman Stefan Brady scored seven runs batted in (RBI). Starting pitcher Thomas Loubser Munn, who pitched all five innings, allowed eight hits and had eight strikeouts.
In the second game, the Stingers continued their offensive outburst, winning 8-4. Third baseman Michael Makarios had an excellent game, with two hits, a walk and a RBI. Hazel once again was brilliant, collecting a hit, a walk and two RBIs.
In the top of the fourth inning, Hazel showed off his defensive ability by snagging a line drive and tagging the runner out at second base.
An outing like this is something Hazel had been hoping for. “We needed to get [our first wins] out of the way,” he said. “[Wins] like this really boost our confidence.”
With the Stingers losing 4-3 in the top of the fifth inning, starting pitcher Shane Mullen was pulled from the game. Relief pitcher Justin Benoit replaced him, and went three innings while only allowing three hits. He did not allow a single run while the Stingers offence scored five more runs.
Benoit said after the game that the offence’s performance made his job a lot easier.
“It makes you feel like you can just go out there and throw your pitch, and if it doesn’t go your way, you have a little leeway,” he said. Benoit showed complete confidence in the hitters, and said he thinks they will have strong games in the future.
“I think we’ve got a solid offence who are just starting to wake up […] and I think they are capable of scoring 10 [runs] a game,” he said.
Manager Howie Schwartz, who was pleased with his team after the short sweep, said he knew
the offence would break out eventually.
“I wanted the wins to come sooner than this, but I’m very happy. We needed it just to get a boost,” he said. “It’s a 16-game season, so we can’t let too much get
away.” While he’s happy the offence broke out, Schwartz said he still believes there is work to be done.
“[The hitters] are finally getting their timing [right],” he said. “But a couple of guys still need to get their confidence up.”
Schwartz added that he thinks the Stringers can be a top team this year. “I have no doubt that [the team can win a championship]. I think our pitching and fielding are as good as anyone else [in the league].”
On Sept. 17, the Stingers added two more wins against the Université de Montréal Carabins, by scores of 2-0 and 9-5. Their record is now 4-4. Their next game is Sept. 20 at home against the McGill Redmen.
Main photo by Ben Fraser.