BASEBALL: Skyline Defeats Saline, Puts Early End to Hornets' Playoff Aspirations

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Giuseppe Gottfried cracks the ball for a double in the bottom of the first.

Skyline scored seven runs in the first two innings and hung on to defeat Saline, 8-5, in a pre-district game at Saline High School Tuesday.

The loss brought a premature end to the season for the Saline varsity baseball squad. The Hornets finished the season with an 18-17 record.

The Hornets were by most accounts the favorites in Tuesday's playoff game - but the Eagles weren't exactly hopeless underdogs. Saline defeated Skyline twice (4-0 and 4-1) and lost to them once (5-4) during the regular season.

The Eagles jumped on senior starting pitcher Braden LaRusso for three runs in the first inning and four runs in the second inning. Jackson Muir pitched 4 2/3 innings of relief, giving up one earned run on three hits while walking two and striking out five. Aidan Carlson pitched one inning of perfect relief, striking out one batter.

The wind was blowing out Tuesday.Skyline began the game with a a single then got a two-run homerun from Sluymers-Tuccinardi. The Eagles got two more singles and a double to take a 3-0 lead.

Early in the game, the Hornets seemed poised to go tit-for-tat with the eagles. Jackson Conley walked with one out. Muir replaced him as a courtesy runner. Giuseppe Gottfried doubled off the wall in right - missing a home run by just a few feet - to score Saline's first run. Kris Sydlowski followed with a line-drive triple to center. Saline was down 3-2.

The game got away from Saline in the second. Jobe doubled and Jecz homered over the left-field fence to make it 5-2.  Sluymers-Tuccinardi and took second on a wild pitch. He scored on a single by McCammon, who took second on the throw to home. Another single brought home a courtesy runner and Skyline led 7-2.

The Eagles added their eighth run in the bottom off the fourth in a single, wild pitch and a single by Jobe.

The Hornets closed the gap in the top of the sixth. Lead-off hitter Bobby Butler was hit by a pitch. Gottfried followed with a home run over the fence in left. Saline was down 8-4. Two batters later, Luke Masters homered over the fence in center. The Hornets were within three.

Gottfried went 2-for-3 with a double, home run and three RBI. LaRusso also had two hits.

It was the final game Saline High School baseball game for seniors:

  • Braden LaRusso
  • Aiden Carlson
  • Sam Jane
  • Bobby Butler
  • Ian Balint
  • Chase Cundiff
  • Liam Yelsma
  • Giuseppe Gottfried
  • Luke Masters
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