The Cathedral Prep, Elmhurst, Crusaders varsity baseball team won its opening CHSAA league game of the season with a 12-0 victory over the Bishop Loughlin M.H.S., Fort Greene, Lions Monday afternoon at Juniper Valley Park, Middle Village.
The Crusaders batted around in the first inning and relied on aggressive baserunning to establish an early 5-0 lead.
The team actually did not record a hit in the bottom of the first but instead simply put the ball in play, forcing the Loughlin defenders to make a play.
“Our team is based on small ball; we don’t have any power hitters,” said junior second baseman Ryan Quinn. “Just getting on base is as important as getting a hit.”
With the bases loaded and one out, junior left fielder Liam Gallagher laid a bunt down the first base line that Lions’ junior pitcher Jacob Garcia bobbled and then threw errantly into center field, plating the game’s first two runs.
“When a situation comes up with something that is very unorthodox, I try to do it,” said Cathedral head coach Rolando Lopez. “Bases loaded with a bunt…I knew Liam (Gallagher) could bunt, so that’s something I could try.”
Staked to a five-run lead, Crusaders’ junior starting pitcher Tim McQuail settled in nicely. He pitched out of a few early jams and kept the Lions off the board.
“I just keep looking forward; I don’t look back,” McQuail said. “That’s really my mentality in the game.”
McQuail pitched five scoreless innings to pick up the win while only allowing two hits and two walks and striking out seven.
After a run in the second, the Crusaders added four runs in the bottom of the third inning. Senior center fielder John Postel delivered a two-RBI single up the middle to break the game open.
A run each in the fourth and sixth innings gave Cathedral Prep the win by the mercy rule. The team next hosts St. Agnes Boys H.S., Manhattan, on Wednesday.