Marian coach Jeff Nietz has been looking for his players to become a little more comfortable in the batter's box and a bit more selective during their atbats.
The veteran coach got exactly that on Wednesday as the Colts rolled to a 16-1 Schuylkill League victory over Weatherly.
"We've been trying to get these guys to be patient at the plate and be selective," Nietz said. "Today, they had to be more patient because for a freshman [Kevin] Hinkle throws pretty well. He spotted his pitches by moving them around a little bit."
After the Colts took advantage of two hit batsmen and an error to score a first-inning run, they followed it up with a seven-run, second-inning explosion to break the game open.
Joe Kloap got the big inning started with an RBI-single, Scott Nietz followed with an RBI-double and Drew Sherkness capped the prolific inning off with a three-run homer over the leftfield fence.
"After the first inning, we realized he wasn't going to be a regular freshman in there," Nietz added. "We started being patient and hitting our pitches. Everyone saw what we did once we waited."
After batting around in the second inning, the Colts followed by sending another nine men to the plate in the third.
A Joe Kloap double and a Jim Stavinski two-run double keyed the Colts' four-run inning.
The Colts weren't quite done offensively as they tacked on four more runs in the fourth. It was third baseman Jim Stavinski stealing the spotlight in that frame by drilling a three-run homer to left almost to the same spot Sherkness' blast landed two innings earlier.
It was a performance Nietz was glad to see from Stavinski, who finished 3-for-4 with a single, double, homerun, two runs scored and five RBIs.
"Jim's been chomping at the bit to get a big game," said Nietz. "I told him today, 'You're due.' Sure enough, he came through for us."
All it took for Stavinski to grab one of the game balls was simply listening to his coach during his pre-game talk.
"Today, I was just waiting for my pitch," Stavinski said. "I wasn't too anxious. It was a great game at the plate for me."
While the Colts were scoring in every atbat, the Wreckers managed only three hits and one run off Sherkness. Senior Nate Pfeiffer got two of them.
"We're definitely young and very inexperienced at the varsity level," said Weatherly coach Brian Kaminski. "Our pitching right now is hurting us because we're throwing a lot of guys that don't have the experience at the varsity level. We threw a freshman today. Although he threw very well, the experience at the plate (of Marian) really caught up to him."
In addition to the big game from Stavinski, Kloap finished with a single, double, three runs scored and a RBI for the Colts. Scott Nietz added a double, two walks and three runs scored; Sherkness ended up with a single, a home run, three runs scored and three RBIs; and Justin Petrovich scored two runs scored.
Marian 174 4 - 16 9 1
Weatherly 000 1 - 1 3 4
Sherkness and Nietz; Hinkle and Walton. W - Sherkness. L - Hinkle. HR: Marian - Sherkness (2nd, two on), Stavinski (4th, two on); Weatherly - none.