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Back on track
Brandon Chesmar, Noah Skladan and Justin Mott combine for shutout
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL Amherst's Kody Bledsoe, front, gets the force out at second base on North Olmsted’s Tyler Truax on Monday.
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL Amherst’s Aaron Soto, right, steps on home plate to score in the second inning against North Olmsted on Monday.
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL North Olmsted’s Joe Keleman, left, makes the tag on Amherst’s Alex Walts in the second inning in Amherst on Monday.
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL North Olmsted's Tyler Truax fields a bunt in the second inning as Zack Bires heads for first base.
With a gauntlet that included seven games over five days now behind them, Amherst (12-3, 7-1 SWC) appeared to be back on track Monday afternoon as it defeated North Olmsted, 5-0 in SWC action.
“We got a little bit away from what we’re used to doing,” Comets’ coach Matt Rositano said. “Today was more Amherst baseball. We pitched well, played defense behind our pitcher, and got some timely hits.”
Amherst starting pitcher Brandon Chesmar (3-0) loaded the bases in the top of the first, but worked through the rough patch to strike out the side.
Eric Walts (2-for-4, RBI) led off the bottom half of the frame with a triple to deep right field and scored when Corey Stamco grounded into a fielder’s choice. Connor Morris reached second on a fielding error in right field was then issued a walk, but Eagles’ pitcher Jake Servidio coaxed Chesmar into a fielder’s choice and struck out Justin Mott to end the inning.
Servidio walked the first two Comets he saw in the second and Zack Bires moved the runners over with a sacrifice bunt. Walts found a hole between second and third to bring home Kody Bledsoe and move Aaron Soto to third before Stamco plated Soto with a single of his own to cap off the frame’s scoring.
Soto followed up his offensive contribution by making a grab that kept North Olmsted (7-7, 3-4) off the board in the third. With two on and two out, Servidio lifted the ball to deep right, seemingly out of Soto’s reach. The right fielder got an early jump on the ball, however, and made a leaping over-the-shoulder catch to end the inning.
“My defense always has my back,” Chesmar said. “They played great again. Soto had some nice plays out there and we scored early so that all gave me some momentum.”
While both teams were held scoreless in the third, walks and an error helped the home team add two more runs in the fourth. Servidio walked Soto to begin the bottom of the frame and after striking out Bires, saw Walts reach on an error by his second baseman.
Stamco was issued the second free pass of the inning before he was thrown out at second on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Morris that allowed Soto to cross home. Walts scored the next at bat when Griffin Weir singled to shallow center.
Chesmar began to tire in the sixth, allowing a leadoff single to Servidio followed by a double to Tyler Truax. Noah Skladan squashed the threat, however, forcing back-to-back infield fly outs and ending the inning by grounding Brad Novak out to second.
“Noah has been fantastic for us all year. He’s a gamer,” Rositano said. “If they get a hit they get a little momentum there and get a rally going. He just came in and shut them down.”
In five innings shutout innings, Chesmar punched out five while walking two and scattering five hits. His counterpart, Servidio, went six innings for North Olmsted, allowing five runs (four earned) while striking out one and walking four.
Justin Mott entered in the top of the seventh in a non-save situation and struck out two on his way to sealing the win.
Next on the slate for the Comets is a showdown with Westlake, who they beat 2-0 earlier this month behind Weir’s one-hit shutout. The righty will take the mound again Wednesday when Amherst travels to take on the Demons at 4:30.
“It should be a great game,” Chesmar said. “We need to put more runs up this time to give our pitcher a better chance.”
Amherst 5, North Olmsted 0
North Olmsted (12-3, 7-1) 000 000 0 — 0 6 2
Amherst (7-7, 3-4) 120 200 x — 5 7 2
TWO HITS OR MORE — North Olmsted: Tyler Truax; 2B — NO: Truax; Amherst: Alex Walts; 2B — A: Chesmar 3B — A: Walts; WP — Brandon Chesmar (3-0), LP — Jake Servidio.
Last Updated: 4/22/2013 11:21:54 PM EST