Chesterton Tribune



Late errors doom CHS Baseball against LaPorte

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For 8 2/3 innings Wednesday, Chesterton played near flawless defense in its Duneland Athletic Conference game with LaPorte.

It was the last 1/3 of an inning when it all came undone.

Fill-in shortstop Travis Brooks committed errors on consecutive plays and center fielder Andrew Ralph misjudged a Travis Upp drive into double, resulting in three runs that all but handed the Slicers an 8-5 victory.

"The wheels fell off," Chesterton coach Jack Campbell said. "Physical mistakes are part of the game. They made them. We made them. Ours were just more crucial. Nobody can point fingers. Everybody in the process of a game or season is going to screw up in some way."

Ironically, it was LaPorte (10-3, 2-2) whose defense was sub-par up to that point, committing five errors. Its miscues just didn't prove to be as costly.

"We haven't played well defensively all year," Slicers coach Scott Upp said. "We're doing it ugly. It was good to see us swing the bats at least."

Chesterton (5-6, 1-3) took a first-inning lead on Tyler Sufana's RBI single that scored Corey Rusboldt, who was relegated to designated hitter duties by a sore arm. A dropped ball on a play at the plate and a Cameron O'Brien single put the Trojans up 3-1 in the third, an edge that held up until the fifth inning. Brandon Roeske struck out eight, allowing only three hits and a run through four frames, but ran into trouble when a walk, hit batter and single loaded the bases with two outs. He went to a full count on Matt Prinz, who drove a bases-clearing single into right center to put the Slicers in front 4-3.

"It's been like that for him in a couple ball games," Campbell said of Roeske. "One big hit and now he's behind. When he's pitching that well, you try to go back and look at the pitch, to see if he's losing it at some point."

The teams traded runs in the sixth with Matt Kubacki doubling in Brooks to make it 5-4. Chesterton pulled even when Roeske doubled home Rusboldt with one out in the seventh. The game went to extra innings after pinch-runner Dallas Milligan was doubled off of second base on a Cole Teal line drive to first.

"We've been pretty good at coming back in games, where we've dug a hole early and gotten behind," Campbell said. "For the most part, we've hit pretty well. Sometimes, it's time and score, when we're getting (the hits)."

Teal was saddled with the undeserved loss, the victim of the unearned runs in the ninth.

"The bottom line is put the ball in play," Upp said. "Make good, solid contact. You can only control what you can. If they make a great play, tip your cap. You did your job."

Nick Willoughby worked two scoreless innings in relief of Jake Teets to earn the win for LaPorte.

Rusboldt finished 3-for-5 with three runs, while Ralph and Sufana added two hits apiece for Chesterton, which lost its fourth game in a row.

"Baseball's a game of failure," Campbell said. "It's how you deal with it."

LaPorte 8, Chesterton 5 (9 inn.)



LaPorte 010 031 003 -- 8 11 5

Chesterton 102 001 100 -- 5 11 2

2B -- Evan Miller, Travis Upp (LP); Matt Kubacki, Brandon Roeske (C). Pitching summary -- LaPorte -- Jake Teets (7 IP, 10 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO), Nick Willoughby (2 IP, 1 H, R, ER, BB, 1 SO). Chesterton -- Roeske (5 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 8 SO), Cole Teal (4 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 SO). WP -- Willoughby. LP -- Teal.



Posted 4/24/2014