By Joe Skinner
LoCoSports Staff Writer
Ashburn (May 24 , 2015) — On a cool and windy night in Ashburn, the Broad Run High School and Freedom High School baseball teams took to the diamond to claim a spot in the Conference 14 championship game. Despite a late rally, the Eagles fell short as the Spartans earned a bid to the VHSL 5A North region tournament with the 6-5 win.
The Eagles took the early lead in the first inning on a single from senior Jack Lerch, double from senior Garrett St. Laurent and two RBI double from senior Will Kirwan to take a 2-0 advantage.
The Spartans responded with an RBI single from senior Evan Davis that scored sophomore Matthew Ritchie to cut the Eagle lead in half.
After a rocky first, senior Jonathan Truba found his grove on the mound for the Spartans. Truba blanked the Eagles until the seventh which allowed his Spartan hitters to also find their grove. Truba proceeded to put down nine of the next ten batters he faced after the first inning.
“Jonathan just pounded the strike zone and made them swing the bat, and to Freedom’s credit, they swung the bat pretty well [with]a couple honest runs early,” Broad Run head coach Pat Cassidy said. “The one big inning helped us relax a little bit, and it allowed us to lose our stress the rest of the way.”
Cassidy also gave a lot of credit to Freedom’s offense, who wouldn’t go down. But with Truba pitching the way he was, Freedom had trouble putting men in scoring position in the middle part of the game.
“We had good at-bats, but made some errors towards the end and made it a little tighter than we would have wanted,” Truba said.
Freedom — down to their last three outs — finally got to Truba in the seventh.
Lerch got the hitting going with a single, and the hit train continued along with St. Laurent, Kirwan and junior Michael Zubovich. The Eagles plated three in the bottom of the final inning — making it a one-run deficit — but Truba got freshman Kyle Schofield to strike out swinging to end the game.
Almost at simultaneous times, the other conference semifinal concluded and Broad Run learned they would be restoring the Battle of the ‘Burn rivalry with Stone Bridge, except this round is for the conference championship at Stone Bridge on May 26 at 6 p.m.
“We got to come out with our bats alive and play good defense with no errors,” Truba said. “[Stone Bridge] lost to Potomac Falls twice, and we beat [Potomac Falls] twice. I think winning is very doable.”
Ritchie 0-1, 2 BB, HBP, 3 R
Coniglio 1-2, 2 BB, 3B, R, 3 RBI
Davis 1-4, ROE, RBI
Buck 1-2, RBI
Revello 0-3, RBI
Goodwin 1-2, HBP, 3B
Bidwell 2-3, R
Lindinfelder 0-2, R
Van Pelt 0-2, BB, R
Lerch 2-4, 2 R
St. Laurent 2-4, 2B, ROE, 2 R, RBI
Kirwan 2-4, 2 RBI
Zubovich 2-4, RBI
Presgrave 0-3, HBP
Peacher 0-2, HBP
Truba W 7 IP, 5 R, 5 ER, 11 H, 1 BB, 4 K
Presgrave ND 3 IP, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 2 K
Zubovich L 3 IP, 4 R, 4 ER, 4 H, 2 BB, 3 K