Covenant Comes From Behind; Collegiate Cruises

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By Jerry Shank
Maryland / Virginia Scouting Director

This weekend saw some of the top private programs from around the state travel to Richmond in double header action at many of the Richmond private school campuses. I had the fortune to catch two intriguing matchups on the day.

Check out the Virginia/DC Scout Blog tomorrow for scouting information from these games

Game 1: Steward v Covenant

Blake Schaar's sacrifice fly knocks in the go-ahead run in the top of the 7th inning as Covenant scores three runs in the final two innings in a come from behind victory.

Pitching was the name of the game between Steward starter 2019 LHP Logan Ransom and Covenant 2017 RHP Jake Haney (William & Mary). Both kept the opposing hitters at bay until the bottom of the third when Steward would start the scoring action off the bat of 1B 2018 Shawn Brown, who sent a deep drive off the top of the fence to left field, scoring two runs.

That drive was the lone hit on the day for Steward because the Covenant pitchers Haney and reliever Declan Kent kept the Steward bats quiet. Haney put together a quality early season start for the Eagles. The righty did not have his best stuff on the day, but still was able to utilize two quality pitches with his dominant fastball and late action breaking ball to keep the Steward hitters off balance and keep Covenant in it through a gritty 3.2 innings. Kent would then shut down Steward for the final 3.1 innings in a big performance for the Eagles.

Stewards starting lefty Ransom kept Covenant off the board through 4.1 innings, giving up two hits while walking four. Covenant would not get on the score board until the sixth inning when Covenant would cut the lead to one after a balk with runners on second and third. Tyler Mahone (Longwood) then knocked in the game tying run on a single up the middle after a long at bat and nice battle between Mahone and Steward reliever Harrison Clifton (Clemson).

Covenant then would lead off the seventh with Mason Mitchell reaching on an infield error followed by a walk. Luke Burton (Davidson) would move the runners to second and third after a sac bunt and set up Schaar for his heroics. 

Covenant improved to 7-1 with the win then later moved to 8-1 after their game two victory on the day. Steward dropped their first game of the season but would beat Bishop O'Connell in their second game to go even on the day.

Game 2: Collegiate v Norfolk Academy

Collegiate got a stellar pitching performance from Evan Justice (NC State) and their potent offensive attack drew away from a 4-1 lead with a seven run 5th inning to defeat Norfolk Academy 11-1 in five on Saturday. 

Collegiate got the scoring started in the first after Jack Sroba scored on an RBI single from Justice in the first. The Cougars would then plate three in the second inning after freshmen Michael Stewart knocked in two runs after driving a well hit ball to right field that got misplayed for a double. Sroba then hit a double of his own to drive in the courtesy runner for Steward the catcher making it a 4-1 lead.

Norfolk would strike back in the top of the third loading the bases with no outs, but Justice was able to induce a 4-6-3 double play followed by a fly out to limit Norfolk Academy to only one run.

The bats would go quiet until the fifth, when the talented young lineup of Collegiate would explode for seven runs highlighted by a opposite field home run by freshmen Trey Boll. Those seven runs would end the game early to the 10-run rule.

Justice was impressive in this early start on the season, limiting Norfolk to five hits, striking out seven with three walks and two HBP.

Justice helped his own cause with two hits on the day while Collegiate freshmen trio of Boll, Stewart, and Nigel Williams each went 2-for-3.

Collegiate went 1-1 on the day after losing to Paul VI in the game prior. 

Be Sure to check out the Virginia Scout Blog tomorrow for more in-depth scouting information from this game.