News-Sun photo by DAN HOEHNE Garrett DeRoss reaches to snare this foul, pop-fly Monday as Sebring was nipped 1-0.
published: Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Streaks shut out
By DAN HOEHNE
AVON PARK - Sebring head coach Buck Rapp's pregame words turned out to be prophetic when he mentioned that "at this point in the season, the pitching is ahead of the hitting."
"In fact hitting is pretty far down the list," he continued. "Pitching, fielding, base running then further down the line, the hitting will come along."
And it turned out to be so as the Streaks lost to Lake Region, 1-0, in the opener of the annual Bill Jarett Ford Early Bird Tournament at Head Field in Avon Park.
The Streaks actually out hit the Thunder, four to three, but two of those three hits added up to a run when Erick Railey doubled in the fourth and A.J. Rhone followed with a single to bring him in.
Sebring gave itself some early chances, with freshman lead-off hitter Jordan Austin reaching on a walk to open the game.
Cullen Lovett would later single to left, but Austin had already been erased on a double play and Lovett was soon forced at second to end the inning.
Again in the second, the lead-off hitter reached, with Garrett DeRoss sending one back up the middle for a single.
But Lake Region right-hander Jake Kelley struck out the next batter and induced another double-play grounder to get out of it.
Things were pretty quiet the rest of the way, with Sebring southpaw Jonathan Struck cruising along and striking out four in his solid four innings of work.
Save for the blip of those two hits that spelled the difference.
"(Struck) did a fine job, they just put two of their hits together at the right time," Rapp said. "And their pitcher (Kelley) is always tough. He was moving it around, changing speeds well. But right now we're just seeing what we have, getting them out there and ready for the season."
The Streaks were scheduled to play LaBelle on the second night of the tournament Tuesday, and will close it out Friday with a match-up with the host Red Devils at 7 p.m.
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