Prep Baseball Report

Division III Team Of The Week: Week 3 - Columbiana

Bruce Hefflinger and Dylan Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Senior Writer and Editor in Chief/NW Scout

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Division III Team Of The Week: Week 3 - Columbiana

COLUMBIANA - “Our ability to play all three phases of the game well.”

That is what head coach Ryan Wolf said has stood out about the 9-0 start to the season for Columbiana, the Prep Baseball Report Division III Team of the Week.

“We have pitched well (13 total runs on the year), hit well (1.059 OPS) and fielded the baseball (six errors in nine games),” Wolf related.

The Clippers picked up five wins this past week, defeating Southern Local 27-0, Ursuline 4-2, Southern Local 14-1, Girard 14-2 and East Liverpool 11-5. There were many highlights in those victories.

Riley McElwain threw a no-hitter against Southern Local while Zachary Pleska (5 innings) and Seth Spooner (2 innings) combined to strike out 15 versus Ursuline. At the plate, Alex Eusebio and McElwain had clutch two-out RBI singles in the win over Ursuline with Devin Daugherty hitting a double and triple against East Liverpool to help break the game open. Defensively, Colin Kelemen caught every game without committing an error for the seventh-rated D-III team in Ohio.

“We have shown the ability to score early in games and get up on teams,” pointed out Wolf, whose biggest win of the season came in game two, a 2-1 triumph over Warren Howland. “We have only trailed for half an inning the entire season. The team has come out focused and ready to play every game.”

Pleska had two home runs and a triple during the week, including a three-run bomb in beating East Liverpool. Spooner was 7-9 at the dish with seven walks and a hit-by-pitch, driving in four runs with a double, triple and homer while scoring nine times. Eusebo had six hits on the week, including a pair of doubles, while walking five times with a .647 on-base percentage. Brady Kridler added to the offensive production going 5-8 with a double and six walks 

For the season, Spooner is hitting ,727, Eusebio .500, Pleska .455, Kridler .412 and Daugherty .400.  McElwain, Pleska and Spooner are all 2-0 pitching with each permitting just one earned run.

“We need to continue to get better each and every day,” pointed out Wolf, whose squad has three league games this week along with a matchup against Cortland Lakeview on Thursday at 7 p.m. at Cene Park. “Despite our 14-2 victory over Girard, I felt it was one of the worst games we played all year as we made a number of mental miscues and baserunning mistakes.

“Our motto this season is win in May, so in order to do that we can't be satisfied with how we have played and need to build on our successes in every phase.”

The schedule ahead features tough non-conference games with Mooney, Austintown Fitch, Hubbard and Toronto.

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