New Berlin West routs St. Thomas More in baseball
Vikings win share of Blue Division crown
New Berlin — New Berlin West baseball coach Tom Farina and his assistants knew well before the first pitch of a Woodland Conference finale against St. Thomas More that the Vikings were keyed up.
It didn't take long for the spectators in the West bleachers to realize it, too. The Vikings struck early and claimed an impressive 16-4 win Thursday.
"Both of my assistant coaches said prior to the game after we got done with infield/outfield, 'They're ready here today,' " Farina said. "They were focused. They've been playing really good baseball the last couple of weeks."
The Vikings scored four runs in the first inning. In the bottom of the second, senior Jesse Riehle lofted a fly ball into a strong wind. The ball carried over the left-field fence for a three-run homer that gave West a commanding 7-1 lead.
West (22-9 overall, 19-5 Woodland) wrapped up a share of the Blue Division title with Cudahy. The Vikings have claimed at least a portion of a conference crown four years in a row.
"We haven't mentioned winning the conference this year," Farina said. "We have four young sophomore guys and we didn't want to put pressure on them. So we said that our goal was to play better every day. But there was no fooling them when they knew it was one win and they win (conference)."
West scored four runs in each of the four innings it came to the plate (the game was shortened by the 10-run rule).
"Most of us (on the team last year) knew what it was like to win it," said West first baseman Jake Rink. "We knew that feeling. Coming in today, I could see in the kids' eyes the fire of wanting to win another one.
"We jumped on them right away. Our coach has been talking about that, jumping on teams and keep burying them so the game's over, and they have no chance of coming back."
Rink was a big part of the damage. The junior had a pair of doubles - including a two-run knock that put West ahead, 12-1, in the third inning - and drove in four runs. The top two hitters in the West lineup, sophomores Zach Scholz and Adrian Peil, combined for six hits.
West entered the game on a roll, having won eight in a row. The Vikings topped Thomas More (16-19, 13-10) in both games of a doubleheader Monday.
"We want a little more than (a conference title)," Riehle said. "We want to go to state and win state. We know there's more work to be done. We had two games against (Thomas More) on Monday, and they were good games. I don't know what happened."
|St. Thomas More||100||03||-||4||6||2|
|New Berlin West||444||4x||-||16||16||1|
Pitchers - NBW: Brad Duggan (W, 5IP, 5K, BB). STM: Blake Correll (L, 2IP, 2BB); Mark Lenz (IP, BB); Alex Nicolai (IP, 2BB). Leading hitters - NBW: Jesse Riehle 3x4 (HR, 3R, 5RBI); Jake Rink 3x4 (2 2B, R, 4RBI); Zach Scholz 3x3 (2B, 4R, RBI); Adrian Peil 3x3 (2B, 3R, 2RBI); Adam Ruiz 2x2 (2RBI). STM: Mike Wasilik 2x3 (2 2B, 2R, RBI); Ray Ocasio 2x3 (RBI). Records - NBW 22-9, 19-5; STM 16-19, 13-10.
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