Chesterton Tribune



Torres fires one hitter as Trojans beat LaPorte

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Chris Torres wasn't scheduled to start until Friday, but was called upon on Wednesday as Chesterton looked to get back on track after falling to LaPorte the day prior.

The right-hander was stellar and allowed just one hit and struck out eight in an efficient 77-pitch complete game leading the Trojans past the Slicers, 5-0, in a Duneland Athletic Conference game at Chesterton.

Grant Brunt was the scheduled starter but after a lightning delay forced a half-hour delay, Brunt was unable to go as he had to attend a school banquet for finishing in the top five-percent of his class.

“We found out Grant couldn't go during the lightning delay,” Chesterton coach Jack Campbell said. “We couldn't warm-up and had to sit on our hands for 30 minutes, so (Chris) got his first warm-ups in on the mound. Maybe we should start doing that all the time. He threw a great ball game.”

His last start came back on April 27 against Hobart where he was tagged for six runs in 2 2/3 innings by the Brickies.

“He struggled big-time last time out against Hobart and everything was up and (Wednesday) everything was down,” Campbell said. “He was throwing first-pitch strikes and that's the name of the game. When you can throw your breaking ball for strikes, especially in fastball situations, you're gonna be really, really successful."

Torres gave up his lone hit on a leadoff single by Nolan Lorenz in the second inning, but that was quickly erased with a double-play ball. Only two more Slicers would reach base (via walk, error) the rest of the game.

“That was our first double play all season, believe it or not,” Campbell said. “Don't get me wrong, we've had other opportunities to turn them, too.”

Five of Torres' eight strikeouts came in the fifth and sixth innings as he punched out five straight Slicers.

"I was trying to mainly get first-pitch strikes and get a ball that allows my defense to get some work behind me," Torres said. "I was mixing in my curveball early and later in the counts and that was my go-to pitch for today. I was able to build off my curveball and after that gets going, everything else seems to be working, too."

Chesterton crossed the dish in the third after No. 8 hitter Logan Lawson smoked a line drive over centerfielder Lorenz's head, scoring a few pitches later on a wild pitch. They would add two more in the next inning on a pair of infield singles from Zach McKenna and Lawson.

Lawson was 3-for-3 with a pair of stolen bases, a run and an RBI for the Trojans (13-5, 9-3). McKenna was 1-for-3 with an RBI and a stolen base.

"Logan Lawson had great at-bats and Zach McKenna hasn't played in a while and came in and hit the ball for us," Campbell said. "That's when you beat people, when your 7-8-9 hitters do something for you. That's the part about being a team, it's not the same one or two guys that lead the way all the time."

With Austin Peterson ailing with a knee injury, Chris VanEekeren returned from an injury of his own and was slotted into Peterson's usual No. 3 spot in the lineup. The third baseman rewarded the move with a solo homer to dead center in the fifth, following up Tommy Benson's screaming liner over the left field wall.

"Wind was blowing out, but the wind was blowing out for everybody and we got a couple up into the wind," Campbell said.

"VanEekeren's been hitting five or six, Petey gets hurt and we put him in the three spot and he makes contact. He made a great play at third base too on an in-between hop."

The Trojans' defense showed improvement committing one error a day after botching four. They remain a game back of Lake Central in the DAC standings and will take on the Indians next week to close out the conference slate.

“This was definitely a big one,” Torres said. “We just have to keep the energy up and we'll continue to be a pretty good team.”

Chesterton 5, LaPorte 0



LaPorte 000 000 0 -- 0 1 1

Chesterton 001 220 x -- 5 8 1

3B -- Logan Lawson (C). HR -- Tommy Benson, Chris VanEekeren (C). Pitching summary -- LaPorte -- Noah Mathias (5 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 5 SO); David Applegarth (1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 0 SO). Chesterton -- Chris Torres (7 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 SO). WP -- Torres. LP -- Mathias (2-5). Leading hitters -- LaPorte -- Nolan Lorenz (1-3).



Posted 5/10/2018




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