SOLON– There’s going to be a learning curve.
Solon Head Baseball Coach Keith McSweeney knows that, but he and his staff are hopeful the Solon varsity team can be competitive by July when it starts to become important.
The Spartans, defending their second state baseball title, have limped out to a 4-11 start (3-5 in the WaMaC East), but the coach is pretty convinced it’ll get better.
“We’re not pleased with the wins and losses,” he said. “We have high expectations.”
But most of the team has only had a week or two of full practice after the end of track and soccer, and only two of the starters have substantial varsity experience.
“This is all new for all these kids,” McSweeney commented.
The Spartans picked up a doubleheader win against Independence Friday night, after splitting with Mount Vernon and dropping two to Marion last week.
Sophomore Nathan Hawkins got the win in the first game, 6-5, striking out seven batters in six innings. Todd Oberthien pitched an inning of relief.
The Spartans trailed 4-2 heading into the fifth inning when Tommy Hamiel’s three-run blast to left field put Solon on top for good.
A 10-run third inning put the Spartans in control of the second game, a 13-3 win. Connor Ham pitched five innings, allowing only two earned runs. Hamiel, Colton Dall and Connor Fitzpatrick each had a double. The Spartans drew eight walks.