Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Blue Devils run-rule VASJ

Independence snapped out of its offensive slump in Friday’s 12-2 six-inning win over visiting Villa Angela-St. Joseph.

The Blue Devils, who have struggled at the plate in their first nine games, recorded 11 hits to down the Vikings.

“We had good at-bats today,” said Independence coach Mark Echstenkamper. We had 11 hits and a number of loud outs. That was huge because we have been struggling at the plate and scoring runs, so to come out today and hit like we are capable was a big confidence boost.”

Jamie McMahon led the Blue Devils with three hits and four runs batted in. He also scored three runs and picked up the pitching victory. He didn’t allow a hit and struck out six in four innings of work.

“After a tough loss yesterday, I thought the team had a great, ‘Now, Next,’ mentality,” McMahon said. “We were more aggressive at the plate and I thought it paid off tremendously. Today was my best day at the plate all year. I was looking to be aggressive early in the count and look for my pitch. It’s a great feeling to be a leader of my team on the mound and at the plate.”

McMahon doubled and hit his first home run of the season.

“It’s always a great feeling hitting a home run,” he said. “The pitch was up and in and I was just looking to get my hands through and turn on the ball. As soon as I made contact I could tell it was going far.”

Jordan Mallernee and Andrew Teribery both finished with two hits for Independence and Nick Mroczynski knocked in two runs.

“Mallernee and Mroczynski both hit the ball well too,” Echstenkamper said. “Nick squared up the ball three different times, which was good for him, and Jordan used the whole field for two solid hits.”

Independence (3-7) hosts VASJ again on Saturday at 10:00 a.m.

Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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