McCarthy Beats Pines Charter In Battle For First Place In District 6A-15
With a schedule loaded from top to bottom with premier programs in the region and from out of state, Archbishop McCarthy faces challenges game in, game out. But none of those was more important than Thursday night’s clash with Pembroke Pines Charter as the teams were vying for first place in District 6A-15.
The teams played a competitive game through four innings before the Mavericks broke open the game with a six-run fifth inning to take an 8-0 win.
Pembroke Pines Charter ace Alejandro Kan kept pace with Archbishop McCarthy ace Andre Martinez until Kan left the game in the top of the fifth. Though he had only one strikeout, Kan, a sophomore, pitched well, allowing three hits, and had help behind him as the defense made the necessary plays to hold down the Mavericks. Kan also got the Jaguars (8-5 overall, 4-1 district) out of a bases-loaded jam in the third, getting Jonathan Quintana to fly out to end the inning.
“Alejandro through the ball well and kept us in the game,” Charter coach Carlos Iglesias said. “But we gave up nine walks and hit a batter, and when you give them that many opportunities, you’re going to be the losing team.”
Martinez pitched five innings, striking out eight and allowing two hits — one each by Cody Fuchs and David Monge-Rodriguez. Nick Travieso pitched the sixth and seventh, striking out four more.
Nick Basto smacked the first of his three hits over the left-field fence to put the Mavericks (13-3-1, 4-0) up 1-0 in the bottom of the second.
An inning later, pinch-runner Blade Bielski came in on Jason Morozowski’s triple. Morozowski also bunted for a base hit, singled and scored in the game.
McCarthy scored six in the fifth with a combination of four walks and four hits to go with a hit batter and a sacrifice fly. Morozowski was hit by a pitch after Adam Duarte lined out to start the inning. Matthew Coolidge then came in to relieve Kan. Walks to Brandon Roberts and Brian Gonzalez loaded the bases before Basto cleared them with a triple. Quintana walked, Travieso singled to bring home Basto and Eddie Silva drew a base-on-balls to load the bases again. Mike Hernandez’s single brought in another run, and Duarte’s sacrifce fly allowed Travieso to score.
“We felt going in, Coolidge was going to keep us in the game, but he just didn’t have it tonight,” Iglesias said.
Basto said the Mavericks understood the significance of the game as McCarthy coach Rich Bielski stressed all week in practice that “this is like our championship game.”
“We came out hard right from the beginning and everyone picked each other up,” Basto said. “It was a great team win.”
Bielski said Thursday’s game was “the most important game of the year thus far.”
“We told them [our players] that this was for the number one seed and we’re facing a good Pembroke Pines Charter team. Carlos always does a great job with his teams. Our job was to come out and execute. We hit the ball really hard all night. Even our outs were hit hard.”
The Mavericks will host yet another quality opponent tonight as St. Brendan comes up from Miami. The Sabres sport a 15-4 record after Thursday’s 8-1 win over Key West, the same team McCarthy will play at Marlins Stadium at 4 p.m. April 9. It will be a rematch of last year’s regional semifinal. McCarthy’s schedule also includes home matchups against Maryland power Calvert Hall on April 5 and another Miami-Dade top team, Gulliver Prep, on April 13.
“There’s no relaxing with our schedule,” Bielski said.