The Manhasset varsity baseball team dominated Sewanhaka, 8-3, in the opening game of their three-game set Monday afternoon. Manhasset got their bats going early by driving in six runs in the first two innings.
The team followed up with a combination of great pitching from junior Jamie Weiss and team defense to nail down the commanding victory.
With the win, Manhasset improves to 2-4-1 in the season. Head coach Brian Corbo was pleased with the team’s performance, stressing that it was important to set the tone early against a struggling Sewanhaka team after coming off some tough games to bigger competition.
“It was a good win” said Corbo. “We’ve been on a little down streak. We won our first game then lost three in a row and battled in the last two games. So it was good to get a win.”
Manhasset got the scoring going in the bottom of the first with a double and a single by seniors Matt Catalfo and Joe Santella to take an early 2-0 lead. They batted fourth and fifth respectively in the lineup.
In the top of the second, after Weiss allowed the leadoff batter on base, Sewanhaka would scratch out a run on a ground ball to cut the lead 2-1. Weiss would settle down after giving up the run.
Manhasset added to their lead in the bottom half of the inning as they rallied to put up four runs, giving them a 6-1 lead.
Two innings later, Manhasset continued to put the ball in play with runners in scoring position as they would tack on two more runs and make it an 8-1 game. Corbo described this approach as “high school baseball.”
“When you put the ball in play, guys are going to make errors and mistakes” said Corbo. “It’s not about hitting a home run or a long line drive. Just put it in play”
Sewanhaka would get two runs back in the top of the sixth inning and cut the deficit to 8-3, capping off the scoring.
Although their situational hitting was pretty good against Sewanhaka, Corbo states that the only issue the team needs to work on is locking down with runners on base and driving the ball more instead of popping up.
“When you are facing a pitcher who doesn’t throw too hard, a lot of guys jump at the ball and pop up a lot instead of staying back and driving in” said Corbo.
Catalfo and Santella provided the offense for Manhasset. Catalfo went 1-4 on the day with a double and two runs batted in. Santella went 1-3 with four RBIs.
On the mound, Weiss tossed a complete game, striking out five, allowing five hits and only one earned run. He threw a lot of strikes, didn’t allow a walk and kept the opposition off the base paths. In this outing, he stuck to his game plan, which was keeping the ball down, getting ahead of the count and attacking hitters.
“It was nice for me to throw the ball down low as opposed to my last outing against Bellmore where I let the ball up too much” said Weiss. “The coaches did a great job helping me out, especially during practice. I think that was the key to my success today.”
In addition to a great pitching performance, Weiss stated that they played an overall good team game and had plenty of help from the defense.
“My teammates were behind me today” said Weiss. “All they did was pick me up even when I had a rough inning or gave up a hit. They would back me up in the field and those plays really helped me out.”