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McCutcheon rally completes sweep of Jeff baseball
April 27, 2014Lafayette Jefferson High School
Few players in McCutcheon’s baseball lineup had sized up Lafayette Jeff pitcher Chandler Ferguson throughout the first five innings Saturday.
Two, though, enjoyed enough success against the freshman right-hander to give the Mavericks a second straight win over the Bronchos.
Myles Hann and Braden Giroux delivered run-scoring hits to spark a five-run sixth inning as McCutcheon rallied for a 5-2 victory in Hoosier Crossroads Conference action.
Hann’s RBI single gave the Mavericks their first run and Giroux connected on a fastball, producing a bases-loaded triple to break a 2-2 tie.
“It just started off as a rough game and we had trouble getting going,” said Giroux, who finished with two hits. “We got a couple of guys on and loaded the bases up. I was able to make a pretty nice hit to put us in the lead.”
Both pitchers were solid but were victimized by poor defense and mental mistakes. None of the seven runs scored were earned but Ferguson began to labor in the sixth when McCutcheon took advantage of two errors and two walks.
What transpired in the sixth shouldn’t diminish how well Ferguson pitched.
“It was a good experience for him to be in that situation,” Jeff coach Scott McTagertt said. “There are going to be situations where the game is on the line and he’ll have to throw. He wanted to be out there and that’s great for a freshman. We’re proud of what we did.”
The Mavericks (10-4, 4-2) were impressed by Ferguson, who scattered six hits and struck out five.
“Chandler threw an awesome game,” McCutcheon coach Jake Burton said. “He really had us. He’s a guy that dominated the game. He did it against some veteran players on our team.”
But Burton’s starter, Jordan Young, was equally as good. The right-hander gave up five hits, but only one in the last four innings, while striking out five. A passed ball and fielding error led to a pair of two-out, run-scoring singles by catcher Jake House in the first three innings and a 2-0 lead.
The problems Jeff (7-6, 1-5) endured in Friday’s 10-0 loss to McCutcheon didn’t surface during the first five innings. However, the defensive issues in the sixth ultimately led its downfall.
“We’re starting to get together and get more confidence,” McTagertt said. “They way they came back after (Friday) night and with the prom (Saturday), they could’ve gone home after five (innings).”
After McCutcheon pounded out 13 hits Friday, Hann and Giroux combined for four of the team’s six on Saturday. The left-handed hitting Giroux believed he had an advantage against Ferguson.
“I think since he’s little bit of a sidearmer, righties may have a little bit more trouble picking him up,” the junior said. “Since I’m from the left side, I was seeing the ball real well today.”
Coupled with Walter Talcott’s performance Friday, the Mavericks have found their starting pitchers in conference games — at least for now. Talcott and Young combined to walk one batter and strike out 14 the last two games.
“A lot of kids have had opportunities and they’ve done a nice job against some tough competition,” Burton said. “Right now, going into next week they’re our top two. It may change but right now that’s where we are. They’ll be our conference pitchers until they show us different.”