Baseball: Morris sweeps Interstate 8 series with Rochelle

Hubs drop Monday finale 4-1 after 7-2 loss Thursday

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ROCHELLE — Junior Braden Alfano threw all seven innings and allowed only four hits, but the Rochelle Hub varsity baseball team was unable to get the bats going Monday evening, when Morris came to town looking to complete a two-game Interstate 8 Conference sweep.

The Hubs struggled to find any offense against Redskin starter Matt Lawton, who struck out 14 Rochelle hitters over six innings as Morris defeated the Hubs 4-1. Rochelle fell to 6-7 overall and 3-6 in the Interstate 8 with the loss. Alfano struck out six batters in his complete-game effort on the mound.

"I thought we were in both ball games and Braden did a great job today," head coach Jarrod Reynolds said. "We couldn't get the big hit when we needed it... Our pitching has been pretty good, but we haven't had the run support we've needed and we're going to work on that so we can hopefully score some more runs."

An error from the Hubs led to an RBI single that put Morris ahead 1-0 in the top of the second inning. The Redskins added two runs in the top of the fifth inning, scoring one on an outfield error by Rochelle and another on an RBI infield single.

Senior Spencer Warborg broke the scoreless drought for the Hubs, cracking a solo home run off Lawton to make it a 3-1 game in the bottom of the sixth inning. Morris plated an insurance run in the top of the seventh inning on an RBI groundout. Rochelle put two runners on base in the bottom of the seventh, but a strikeout ended the game.

Game 1

The Rochelle Hub varsity baseball team began a two-game Interstate 8 Conference series against Morris on Thursday, falling 7-2 on the road and moving to 6-6 overall with the loss.

Morris took a 2-0 lead on two singles, one double and a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the first inning. Rochelle earned one run back in the top of the second inning, scoring on an RBI single from senior Mark Hopkins before junior Andy Buskohl tied the game at 2-2 with an RBI double to left in the top of the third inning.

Two run-scoring singles put Morris ahead 5-2 in the bottom of the third inning. Both teams went scoreless over the fourth and fifth innings, but the Redskins added two runs on passed balls in the bottom of the sixth inning. Buskohl started on the mound for the Hubs, throwing four innings and striking out three before junior Eric Briseno took over in relief, striking out two batters in two innings. 

Fresh/Soph

The Rochelle Hub fresh-soph baseball team fell 6-0 against Morris on Friday to move to 5-3 on the season. Noah Lara and Christian Burnette each threw three innings, with Burnette striking out three batters. Burnette also totaled two hits at the plate, with Garrett Gensler, Colton O'Rorke and Brandon Moody also recording hits.