.....Advertisement.....
.....Advertisement.....

Baseball: LA shows signs of improvement

-A A +A
By Mike Cote

Even though the Los Alamos Hilltopper baseball team dropped both ends of its doubleheader Saturday, there wasn’t a lot to complain about.“What a difference between Tuesday and Saturday,” Hilltopper manager Mike Gill said, referring to a season-opening pummeling the ‘Toppers took at the hands of Belen early last week. “We had 13 walks and eight errors (Tuesday) compared to three walks and four errors.”Los Alamos fell to Piedra Vista’s Panthers 10-0 in game one and 3-2 in 11 innings in the nightcap. Both games were played at Ricketts Park in Farmington.Jeremy Kasik (0-1) took the loss in the first game, throwing four innings and allowing six earned runs. Gill said Piedra Vista didn’t really get to him until about the fourth inning, with Kasik keeping the Panthers fairly well in check for the first three innings.In the second game, Zak Walterscheid threw six innings to start the game, earning a no decision. He gave up just two runs, both earned, and five hits through the six innings.Scott Berkebile (0-2) was the hard-luck loser in the second game. Throwing a good mix of breaking balls, Berkebile held Piedra Vista scoreless for four innings before giving up a run in the bottom of the 11th.The Hilltoppers had a couple of chances to win the game before the 11th, their best chance coming with Eli Pulliam getting a lead-off base hit in the ninth. Walterscheid hit a bullet to right field, but the line drive went straight at the right fielder.Gill said one of the things the squad needs to work on is sustaining innings at the plate.Adam Eberhart and Pat Berkebile both went 1-for-2 in the first game. Pulliam was 3-for-5 with a double and a run scored in game two, while Zach Mang and Lucas Coker were both 2-for-4 with a RBI each.Because two starters were out on a choir trip, several Hilltoppers were playing out of their regular positions Saturday, most notably Lance Fresquez, who started game two at catcher and allowed just one passed ball in 11 innings.Gill said he’d like to get in the win column at the St. Pius X Invitational, which starts Thursday, but he’s encouraged by what he saw Saturday.“I told the kids, ‘we’re still 0-3,’” he said. “Our goal is to win, but we’re playing good baseball and that gives us a chance to win.”Walterscheid is penciled in as the starter in Thursday morning’s game against San Juan, Utah.Gill said the southpaw Walterscheid hit his spots well against the Panthers, including getting his pitches inside against right-handed hitters.