Baseball looks to uphold tradition
The only blemish on the Salisbury baseball team’s record so far early on in the young season is a 1-0 defeat to Notre Dame (Green Pond) last week. In all three games, the common theme for the Falcons has been solid defense and shutdown pitching.
Both were on display against Moravian Academy over the weekend. Senior Taylor Linn and freshman Quinn Warmkessel pitched a five-inning 15-5 win for the Falcons, with the starter Linn picking up the victory.
“Coach [Mike Pochron] was talking to us after the Notre Dame game about our two-strike approach,” senior Joey Galantini said. “We did a really nice job with that. Taylor and Quinn gave us solid innings on the mound, and our defense was solid as usual. I’d say almost everyone chipped in on offense, so it was a nice team win.”
The win came just two days after that 1-0 setback against Notre Dame, one of the Colonial League favorites. The defense and pitching was impressive as usual against the Crusaders, but the offense failed to provide any help for ace Andrew Sukanick.
That changed against Moravian Academy when the Falcons exploded for 15 runs on seven hits, including two doubles. Five different Falcons scored two or more runs.
Moravian got within 5-2 after the second inning before Salisbury broke the game open with its most productive inning of the season. The Falcons erupted for eight runs in that third-inning explosion, and after adding one more in the fourth, Salisbury put into effect the 10-run rule in the fifth.
“It’s always nice to have an offensive explosion,” Galantini said. “Our bats were kind of slacking the first two games, so it was nice to get them going. We are very strong on the mound and on defense, but when we hit like that we are dangerous as a team.”
Galantini, who went 1-for-1 in the game with three RBIs, was one of those five Falcons that crossed home at least twice. He’s Salisbury’s top hitter on the season thus far, recording a .600 average and a .800 on-base percentage.
Senior Pete DuBois (.250 average, two runs, two RBIs), Quinn Warmkessel (.375 average, two runs), junior Colten Hagadus (.273 average, three runs) and senior Cole Warmkessel (.444 average, two runs) have led the Falcons’ offensive charge early this season.
Galantini and the rest of the Falcons know that if they wish to be a threat to the rest of the Colonial League and District 11, that offense must continue its upward trend.
“Andrew has been lights out for the most part, and our defense does not have a hole,” Galantini said. “We are very deep on the mound and we have great chemistry in the field. I’d say our pitching and defense is where it needs to be, but the bats need to keep coming along.
“Before our season started, coach talked to us about the winning tradition that Salisbury baseball has. We did not make the playoffs last year, and a couple teams gave us a beating. This year we are out on a mission to get revenge and bring the winning tradition back.”
Salisbury hosts Catasauqua on Wednesday for a 4 p.m. start. That begins a string of four consecutive days with games for the Falcons. They’ll travel to Northwestern on Thursday, head up to Palmerton on Friday, and make the trek to Pen Argyl on Saturday morning.