RADNOR >> Andrew Boujoukos is the first to admit when the energy level in the Radnor dugout wanes.
The Raiders aren’t always the most vocal bunch, so when Monday afternoon they rested on the laurels of a three-run first inning that by the top of the fourth was proved by Ridley not to be enough for a win, Boujoukos knew they needed a jolt.
In the bottom of the sixth, he provided it personally.
Boujoukos’ single to center scored Will Hoysgaard from second base, the go-ahead run in a 4-3 Radnor Central League triumph.
“I think it starts with the dugout, everyone getting into the game,” Boujoukos said. “Everyone was dragging toward the middle of the game, and I think what we struggle with most is motivation. When we’re down, we all go down, and I think that’s something we can work on a lot.”
Hoysgaard, who tossed five innings and left with the no-decision, worked a leadoff walk in the sixth, the last batter of the day for Ridley starter Tyler Reed. Reliever Ryan Adelsberg induced George Hoysgaard to fly out to center, but then in strode the No. 5 hitter Boujoukos.
After watching two pitches, one to allow Will Hoysgaard to swipe second, Boujoukos ripped a clean single to center, Hoysgaard motoring home with ease.
“Coach (Joe Kerrigan) sent me to second on a steal and Andrew was able to do his job,” Hoysgaard said. “He hit the ball hard and get me in and get that win.”
— Matthew De George (@sportsdoctormd) May 1, 2017
The crack of Boujoukos’ bat awoke the Raiders from the doldrums. They struck for three runs in the first inning, the game’s first three batters all scoring, aided by some loose Green Raiders fielding. But Reed settled in, and Boujoukos’ sixth-inning safety joined a Sean Mullarkey infield bloop to lead off the third as the Raiders’ only hits of the last five innings.
Reed adeptly quelled the Raiders’ bats. He drew the hard-luck loss despite allowing just two walks and three hits in five-plus innings, using just 64 pitches to economically get there.
“He battled,” Ridley third baseman Greg Kimmel said. “He had one bad inning and then he came back strong for five innings. He battled.”
Kimmel provided much of Reed’s backing. He doubled down the right-field line in the second and scored on an infield single by John Mastella. In the third, Kimmel split the left-center gap with a thunderous double that plated TJ McNeely. That rally, though, was short-circuited when Connor Rhinehart nabbed Ryan Tait at the plate on Ryan Meyer’s fly ball to right, relaying through Evan Moore.
Greg Kimmel bashes an RBI double. Ridley down 3-2, 2nd and 3rd, 1 out. pic.twitter.com/kRnQpbtXHS
— Matthew De George (@sportsdoctormd) May 1, 2017
The twin-killing only delayed Ridley’s restoration of parity. With two outs in the fourth, nine-hitter Adelsberg worked a walk, stole second and third and sprinted home when Moore booted a grounder at first. Moore atoned with a smart back-handed snare and flip to Will Hoysgaard covering to nip McNeely to the bag by the slightest of margins, ending the rally.
Hoysgaard was effectively wild, walking four but striking out eight. He exited after five innings at 96 pitches, the power-pitching lefty a casualty of new pitch-count rules that prize efficiency.
“Last year, I definitely went a lot later in games because I was able to throw a lot more pitches,” Hoysgaard said. “So that’s definitely something that I think about, trying to limit the pitch count every inning and keep it down.”
Pat Lofton manned the final two innings, getting the win and striking out the side in the seventh after Ryan Tait’s lead-off walk and two steals by pinch-runner Jimmy Bramwell.
For Boujoukos’ lament of his team’s intermittently flagging zeal Monday, a senior-laden group recognizes this as the part of the calendar to perk up. The defending District 1 Class AAA champs, Radnor boasts wins in four consecutive postseasons, something few Delco teams in recent decades can claim.
A gutsy win like Monday’s, even with Hoysgaard admitting he lacked his best stuff and the bats relatively muted, bodes well for rediscovering the scrappy form that has served them so well in Mays past.
“We know we’re going to do our job later in the season and going into the playoffs,” Boujoukos said. “We’ve already experienced that, and I think today shows that if we go down or if we are in a close game, we know we have the guys to put the ball in play or strike someone out and get us the win.”
Also in the Central League:
Penncrest 4, Haverford 3 >> Dylan Lomas doubled and provided the walk-off single in the ninth inning to lift the Lions on senior day.
Justin Prorock provided five strong innings for the Lions, while Mike Lansberry got the win in relief.
Dylan Resnick homered for Haverford, while Nicholas DeFeo handled duties on the mound for six solid innings.
Lower Merion 3, Strath Haven 2 >> Adam Robinson tripled and drove in two runs, and Will Carey doubled among his two hits but was saddled with the loss as the Panthers fell in nine innings.
Garnet Valley 10, Marple Newtown 2 >> Mason Miller tripled twice as the Jags rapped out 12 hits, six for extra bases, in support of winning pitcher Will Wesolowski.
Luke Cantwell homered for Marple Newtown.
Springfield 5, Upper Darby 2 >> Will Messick’s two-run single keyed a three-run second inning to power Springfield. Brandon DiChiacchio and Greg Tamaccio provided two hits and an RBI each, and Tom Quinn scored twice.
Scott Devlin and Mike Peters drove in runs for the Royals.
In the Catholic League:
Archbishop Ryan 1, Archbishop Carroll 0 >> Tyler Kehoe drew the hard-luck loss with three strikeouts and four hits scattered over six innings, but seven errors caught up to the Patriots with an unearned tally in the sixth.
Cole Chestnut, Chris Grill and Dan Crossan were each 2-for-3 for Carroll (9-5, 6-3).
Bonner & Prendergast 9, Conwell-Egan 3 >> Dom Dellabarba stroked a double and triple while going 3-for-3 with one walk, four RBIs and two runs scored. Evan Raiburn allowed one hit and one earned run in five innings to get the win.
In nonleague action:
Cardinal O’Hara 13, Delco Christian 0 >> O’Hara kept things in the family, with the brothers Bromley (Nick and Brian) and Sprague (Cole and Luke) tossing an inning each in the shutout.
Isaiah Hammond backed the offense with two hits and two runs scored, while Kevin McKeon jacked a two-run homer and drove in three for O’Hara (7-8).
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