Trojans Flex Their Muscles

Conley, Kartesz Homer As Southwestern Beats Eagles 13-1

The Southwestern Trojans congratulate Chase Kartesz after his walk-off, three-run home run to end Monday’s 13-1 nonleague win over Chautauqua Lake at Packard Field. P-J photo by Matt Spielman

LAKEWOOD — Southwestern continued its season-opening power surge Monday afternoon.

Two days after senior Jameson Walsh hit his first home run of the year in a win at Allegany-Limestone, fellow seniors Peter Conley and Chase Kartesz went deep as the Trojans beat nonleague Chautauqua Lake 13-1 at Packard Field.

“We’ve shown in the past four games that we have four or five guys who can stick the ball pretty hard. It’s nice to see them come alive after last year not really proving that,” Southwestern head coach Jared Brown said. “The whole lineup has been hitting the ball well. From top to bottom, I think we’ve been doing a great job.”

Already leading 6-0 in the bottom of the third inning, Conley hit a 1-0 pitch over the tall left-field fence to score Walsh and make it a 9-0 game.

“Coach (Kyler) Majka has done a tremendous job with Pete behind the dish and Pete’s just gaining confidence every game,” Brown said of Conley, who is also Southwestern’s catcher this year. “He’s also worked very hard in the offseason at crafting that position.”

Trojans head coach Jared Brown congratulates Peter Conley after his two-run shot. P-J photo by Matt Spielman

Later in the inning, eighth-grader Wilson Genareo singled, stole second and scored on junior Robbie Bellardo’s RBI single to make it 10-0.

“That kid’s got no fear. He’s already pitched in two games. … I could see him eventually moving up into the leadoff spot,” Brown said of Genareo. “He’s a very knowledgeable baseball player for his age and mature for his age. I’m not concerned one bit with his grade level because he can play with these guys.”

Southwestern (4-0, 1-0 CCAA D1) then needed just three outs in the top of the fifth inning to end the game, but the Eagles hung around as sophomore Devin Hewes singled with one out, stole second and scored when junior Nate Henry reached on an error extending the game.

“Regardless of the score, whether we are up or down, we are going to keep on fighting. We are going to continue to scratch runs across until it’s over,” Chautauqua Lake head coach Matt Cummings said. ” … I was very happy the guys didn’t just pack it in and they fought back to scratch across a run.”

The Trojans answered in the bottom of the fifth.

Southwestern’s Judd Harris dances at second base after hitting a double during Monday’s CCAA Division 1 baseball game against Chautauqua Lake at Packard Field in Lakewood. P-J photo by Matt Spielman

Sophomore George Marshall led off with a double and went to third on a wild pitch, but was thrown out at home trying to score on another wild pitch.

“There is a lot of stuff that we have to clean up,” Brown said. “I like the aggressive baserunning … but there’s a time and a place, especially when you’re trying to close out the 10-run.”

Walsh then walked and stole second before Conley singled with two outs. That left the game in the hands of Kartesz, who hit a walk-off three-run home run over the right-field fence on a low-and-inside full-count pitch.

“I have seen it, but not in a game,” Brown said of Kartesz’s power. “He’s come a long way from last year to this year, both strength and mechanics.”

The long drive made a winner of junior Brody Ellis, who allowed four hits and one unearned run while walking two and striking out eight.

“This was a great relief to have somebody come in here, step up and give us five quality innings. I wanted to ride him as long as possible with as many games as we have and not go too deep into our bullpen,” Brown said. “This was his first varsity start and I thought he did a tremendous job.”

Southwestern took a 3-0 lead in the second inning off Chautauqua Lake’s senior starter Eliot Reyda. Conley led off with a single and scored on an RBI double by Kartesz. Genareo then reached on a fielder’s choice and Bellardo singled with two outs before junior Judd Harris hit a two-run double.

Reyda allowed a leadoff single to Walsh in the third inning and the Eagles (0-2, 0-0 CCAA D2) turned to senior Nolan Olson on the mound. Freshman Oscar Harris greeted him with an RBI single before Ellis and Bellardo eventually forced home runs with bases-loaded walks to make it 6-0.

“Anytime you give a good team like Southwestern extra outs in an inning whether it’s making errors on defense or giving guys a free base, it always comes back to bite you in the butt,” Cummings said. “They know how to drive in runs and they are very opportunistic with runners on base.”

On the day, Reyda, Olson and sophomore Clayton Smith combined to walk eight while striking out three.

Chautauqua Lake is scheduled to open Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Athletic Association Division 2 play today at home against Maple Grove, while Southwestern will complete its Division 1 home-and-home series with Allegany-Limestone back at Packard Field.

“We’re getting closer, definitely not where we want to be just yet. Still too many third strikes looking,” Cummings said. “I think we’re heading in the right direction, understanding that good things happen when you put the ball in play.”

NOTES: Eight of Southwestern’s nine starters recorded at least a hit with Conley going 3 for 4 with two RBIs and three runs scored. Kartesz was 2 for 3 with four RBIs and two runs scored, while Bellardo also had two hits. … Henry had two of the Eagles’ four hits with Hewes and Smith recording the other two.


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