Prep Baseball Report

NHSI Day 4: Orange Lutheran Claims Third Straight Title

Nathan Rode
National Supervisor

CARY, NC—If Orange Lutheran HS, CA, owns Cary, then Eric Borba is mayor. The Lancers claimed their third straight title at the National High School Invitational, beating Harvard-Westlake HS, CA, 6-2. RHP Evan Adolphus was brilliant for 6.2 innings, losing a perfect game bid after 4.1, and OF Caden Connor claimed the MVP award with a 3-for-3 day, capping his 7-for-10 week.

Pitching depth is clearly key to winning four games in four days, but most teams have to turn to a crafty or young arm by the time Saturday rolls around. The Lancers had Adolphus in their pocket, a Cal State Fullerton recruit who touched 91 in the first and held his high-80s fastball throughout the game. Working with a solid three-pitch mix, he set the first 13 Wolverines down in order before allowing a single to SS Drew Bowser. He quickly retired the next two to get through the fifth.

The Lancers opened the scoring in the first inning with two runs. After a single and walk by OF Chad Born and Connor, C Jared Thomas singled to the left side. That brought Born home and Connor followed on an error on the play. An error bit the Wolverines again in the third. With the bases loaded and two outs, there was a soft pop-up to 1B Tyler Ganus. It popped out of his glove, allowing Connor and Thomas to score. They had reached on a single and walk respectively.

Orange Lutheran added a run in the fourth after Connor doubled and came home on a single by OF Jasiah Dixon. Their sixth and final run came on an RBI single by 1B Garrett Frechette in the sixth.

Harvard-Westlake put up two runs in the sixth on a single by 2B Tyler Cox, but couldn’t muster any more offense off of Adolphus. He finished with two runs allowed on four hits and two walks in 6.2 innings. He struck out four. RHP Karson Bowen entered with two outs in the seventh and got OF George Cooper to ground out to seal the win.

With their third straight title, the Lancers now have the most in the event’s history, surpassing Mater Dei’s two from 2012-2013. Southern California’s dominance continues with the matchup between Harvard-Westlake and Orange Lutheran. Seven of the eight champions and 13 of the 16 finalists have come from the baseball hotbed.


Here are some notes from Saturday’s consolation games…

+ SS C.J. Abrams (Blessed Trinity Catholic HS, GA) went 2-for-3, using his speed to easily reach second on a double in the right-center field gap.

+ Between Thursday and Saturday, SS Anthony Volpe (Delbarton School, NJ) reached based in nine straight plate appearances. He was 4-for-4 with a home run and walk on Thursday, and then went 3-for-3 with a hit by pitch on Saturday. After the first-round loss to Desert Oasis HS, NV, Delbarton won its next two games by a score of 28-0.

+ Marist HS, IL, beat Hagerty HS, FL, behind OF Jason Hodges, who was 2-for-3 with a home run and single. OF Riley Greene nearly gave Hagerty the lead in the seventh, crushing a ball to right-center field, but it was hauled in at the track to end the game.

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