Crimson Bears’ Bats Sink Vikings

    Juneau-Douglas senior Brock McCormick connects on a pitch for a home run on Saturday agaisnt the Petersburg Vikings at Adair Kennedy Field. (Klas Stolpe)

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The Juneau-Douglas High School Kalé baseball team put up 36 runs in two games on Saturday at Adair Kennedy Field, topping the visiting Petersburg Vikings 13-2 and 23-1 in non-conference action.

      “The players came out swinging and they didn’t stop,” Juneau-Douglas coach Chad Bentz said. “It was a really good weekend but I am honestly not surprised because they had a really good week of practice. I’ve always told them, if we prepare the right way the games will take care of themselves.”

      Seniors Christian Ludeman and Brock McCormick sent a group of youngsters scouring through the woods beyond the outfield fence in the opener, as the duo connected for three home run balls into the center and left field toolies.

      Young fans Crosby Landvick, Jameson Randolph, Isaac Kersh, Eliason Randolph and Mac Host said they love baseball.

      “We want to catch balls mostly,” they said. “We’re ball boys. We get all the baseballs and give them back to the coaches.”

      The Crimson Bears received a lot of returned baseballs on Saturday.

      McCormick hit a solo dinger in the first inning, Ludeman hit a two-run shot in the second inning with McCormick on base, and McCormick a two-run shot in the third inning with junior Porter Nelson on.

      Ludeman also had a grand slam in the third inning of the night cap with seniors Ben Coutu (single), Rae Razor (walk) and McCormick (single) watching from the bases.

      “I was really proud of the guys,” Crimson Bears coach Bentz said. “Once we got a lead over Petersburg we played classy. We preach to the guys that you want to be a good winner, and you want to be a good loser if you don’t win. Petersburg is super well coached, they are a great program, they just don’t have as many people to choose from as we do.”

      In the two games McCormick had six hits, five runs batted in and six runs scored; Ludeman had five hits, six RBI and five runs; senior Garrett Bryant totaled two hits, four RBI, three runs; sophomore Kaleb Campbell two hits, three RBI, two runs; senior Olin Rawson three hits, three RBI, two runs; junior Gavin Millard two hits, 1 RBI, four runs; Nelson four hits, 1 RBI, four runs; Razor 1 RBI, three runs; Coutu one hit, two runs; junior Gabby Soto three hits, three RBI, one run; sophomore Caden Mesdag two hits, one RBI, two runs; sophomore Eli Crupi one hit, two RBI, 1 run; freshman Lamar Blatnick two hits, two RBI, one run; and junior Kai Schmidt one RBI.

      McCormick is the Crimson Bears top catcher.

      “I use the position to fill the leadership position on the field because I am pretty vocal,” McCormick said. “The catcher sees everywhere on the field. I try to communicate with my teammates, get everyone on the same page.”

      McCormick also started on the mound to open Saturday play and struck out six batters in the five inning game, walking one and giving up just three hits.

      Nelson started the night cap and struck out four in two innings; Rawson struck out two in one inning, allowed two hits and walked two; Ludeman struck out two in one inning; and Millard struck out one and allowed one hit.

      Petersburg’s Jack Engell totaled two hits, two RBI and 1 run on the weekend; and Michael Durkin, Kieran Cabral, Brennan Skeek and Mattias Volk totaled one hit each.

      The Crimson Bears also topped the Vikings 8-1 on Friday as Bryant struck out 15 batters in five innings before being relieved by Schmidt.

      “My arm felt good,” Bryant said. “I was just pounding the strike zone and feeling really good.”

      Bryant said he knew it would be a good outing when in warmup bullpen.

      “My arm felt good and I was just ready to go,” he said. “Just keep pounding that strike zone and trying to get… mix up some pitches… I’m just trying to make sure I throw strikes, help the team win the game and do my job.”

      Bryant also had three RBI, Schmidt two and McCormick one. McCormick and Ludeman had two hits apiece; Bryant, Rawson , Schmidt and Mesdag one hit each; McCormick and Millard two runs apiece; Nelson, Coutu, Bryant and Mesdag one run each.

      There were no home runs in the contest.

      “We don’t chase foul balls,” the dedicated group of youngsters chorused from beyond the center field fence. “But we will keep the old water logged balls.”

      Juneau-Douglas will play Thunder Mountain at 7 p.m., Wednesday at Adair Kennedy Field (JV at 4).

    Above: Juneau-Douglas junior Kai Schmidt is hit by a pitch against Petersburg on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe)

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