Baseball dominates Ridgewood in third-consecutive win

Will Klearman, Staff Writer

The windy, cloudy, 40 degree weather couldn’t slow down the red-hot ETHS baseball team.

The Kits dominated Ridgewood 6-1 last Friday at Northwestern’s Rocky Miller Park. After dropping the home opener to Hersey 6-4, E-Town’s record now stands at 4-1 thanks to wins against Walter Payton, Lake Forest and Conant.

Junior Henry Rouch started on the mound for ETHS. Rouch pitched five clean innings, gave up no hits and struck out six. Rouch’s fastball in particular gave the Rebels trouble all game long.

“Henry does a great job at locating his fastball, both inside and [outside] the plate,” said Assistant Varsity Coach Chris D’Amato.

The ETHS bats also delivered. The offense was ignited when senior Brandon Brokowski doubled in the bottom of the third, driving in Evanston’s first two runs. Brokowski, junior Charlie Kalil and senior Sam Sheikh all logged RBI’s.

“We are always taught to look for fastballs early in the count … [the opposing pitcher] wasn’t throwing super hard so I was early on a few of his pitches. Then, in the middle of the at-bat,  I finally timed it up and put one in play,” said Brokowski.

Since the loss to Hersey, the Kits have improved on the field and at the plate.

“We built from our mistakes in the first game,” said Brokowski.

The Kits opening-day game against Hersey was sloppy. ETHS committed several errors in the field, struck out numerous times at the plate, walked batters and ultimately let Hersey pull away in the final inning.

“We didn’t play as a team, we had a lot of mistakes and a lot of errors. But now we’re playing much more as a team, guys are starting to get hot.  We are putting up more runs—runs win games,” said Brokowski.

ETHS has outscored their opponents 30-8 during their winning streak.

“The differences are that we are pitching great on the mound, throwing strikes and stringing together great at-bats,” said D’Amato. “Guys that are getting in big opportunities are coming through.”

The cold weather certainly didn’t slow down the team. In fact, Coach D’Amato believes it gave ETHS an advantage.

“[The team] looks forward to playing in this kind of weather. It really brings them together on the field. Once they know that they’re all supporting each other on the field, they just block out the cold.”

The Kits will play next in Vero Beach, Florida during their annual spring break trip, where they will have ten games over seven days. For Brokowski, the mentality going into the trip is simple:

“We got to keep doing what we’re doing.”