Baseball advances to No. 5 in nation

Baseball advances to No. 5 in nation

Pitcher Jack Limongelli ’19 pitches in a 4-2 win over Chaminade. Photo Credit: Ryan Albert/Chronicle

The baseball team remains undefeated in league after completing a three-game sweep of Notre Dame, giving them a league record of 9-0 and an overall record of 17-3.

At the beginning of the season, Notre Dame was ranked the best high school baseball program in the nation by Baseball America. In fact, the Wolverines swept the Knights in the three-game league series, winning 4-3, 10-2 and 8-4.

Last year, the team lost to the Knights in two of the three league games, winning 4-0 in the first game away before losing 2-1 at O’Malley Field and 2-1 away.

In order to notch key wins against rivals like Notre Dame, players focus on the current game and trust in their hard work, pitcher Jack Limongelli ’19 said.

“For the team, it’s just win one game at a time, and we continue to play good baseball,” he said. “Our goal is to win a championship at the end of the year, and if we continue to work hard and play well, I think we can do that. All I can do is trust our defense and hope to continue pitching well.”

Following the Notre Dame series, the Wolverines are now ranked fourth in the state and fifth in the nation, according to Max Preps. The team has markedly improved in ranking from the end of last season, where they ranked 19th in the state and 157th in the nation.

Even before the Notre Dame series, the Wolverines had found success in tournaments and league games.

They swept their series against Alemany, winning the three games 6-2, 9-0 and 5-2. Last season, they took two out of the three games in the series against Alemany. The team also beat Chaminade 11-4, 4-2 and 2-1 this season, improving on their 2-0-1 record against them last year.

The team went 4-1 in the Easton Tournament and 3-1 in the Boras Classic. The squad also went 1-1 against Ghar, winning their first game 6-3 and losing the second 3-2. This loss was one of three losses this season, all out of league.

This year, the players are close both on and off the field, and that team dynamic has contributed to its dedication and success, Baseball Program Head Jared Halpert said.

“I think this group of guys is really close, and usually that is going to produce a pretty successful outcome on the baseball field,” he said.

With three more league series left in the season, the team is halfway through regular season but already preparing for playoffs. With the playoffs in mind, players are thinking about goals for the postseason, third baseman Loren Franck ’18 said.

“We are looking forward to reaching our goal of winning league, and once we do that, reaching our goal of winning CIF as well,” Franck said. “We put in more time than any other team, and we want to go make sure our work pays off.”

The team will face off against St. Francis April 24, 25 and 27 in their next league series on their road to CIF. Moving to the next games, Halpert wants his players to continue to focus on their goals rather than be distracted by their recent successes.

“Winning baseball games in our league is a good feeling no matter who it is or when it is because of how competitive our league is,” he said. “It certainly feels good to come out the victor during the week, and I think we are all looking forward to the future here. We have got three more really tough opponents ahead, so we are preparing for them now.”

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