Van Pelt leads Laurier to wins

Men's baseball won both games of their doubleheader against McMaster, 9-0 and 13-3. (Photo by Andriana Vinnitchok)

Men’s baseball won both games of their doubleheader against McMaster, 9-0 and 13-3. (Photo by Andriana Vinnitchok)

It seemed like nothing could go wrong for Wilfrid Laurier pitcher Brett Van Pelt as the Golden Hawks kicked off Saturday’s doubleheader versus the McMaster Marauders on Homecoming weekend.

Tallying up ten strikeouts and only allowing one hit on base through the entire game, Van Pelt improves his win streak to 3-0 and his ERA to 1.42.

“I feel pretty good. I was able to establish a strike zone, get ahead of the hitter, and give my team a chance to win,” van Pelt said when discussing how he felt about his performance for the day.

The Hawks were also solid, making sure that the Marauders could not build any kind of momentum during the game. First baseman McKenzie Maxwell got the ball rolling when he hit an RBI single to right field in the fourth, and third baseman Jeff Hunt followed that up in the next inning, hitting a double and bringing in 2 more runs to establish a 3-0 lead by the end of the fifth. The game stayed close until the sixth when the Golden Hawks blew the game wide open, finishing with a 9-0 win over the Marauders.

“I think it’s big for us to try and get some steam behind us, hopefully get another win at the back end of the doubleheader [later Saturday] and [Sunday] with Waterloo we have a big series because we are chasing them in the standings for a playoff spot,” Van Pelt said.

In the second doubleheader, the Hawks quickly jumped to a flying start, going up 3-1 by the end of the first inning. Laurier never looked back after that, winning the game 13-3.

Highlights included perfect 3-for-3 batting attempts by centre Jonathon Brouse, and a grand slam by designated hitter Alex Kupchak in the bottom of the fourth, who also picked up six RBIs that game, eliminating any chance for the Marauders to rally for a comeback.

Head coach Scott Ballantyne said he was very pleased with the performance from his Hawks.

“Our pitching was excellent today, as Van Pelt was unhittable and we also played great defence. Errorless baseball,” he said after the final game of the doubleheader.

When asked about what aspects of their game he thinks his team needs to stay sharp on in order to move forward, Ballantyne explained it comes down to two things.

“With us it comes down to pitching and defence,” he said. “If we pitch well and play good defence, we will always have a chance to win. We work on our defence a lot at practice and the hard work is paying off.”

The Hawks finished off their Homecoming weekend on Sunday where they faced the Waterloo Warriors in another doubleheader, losing their first game 10-4 before coming back and winning their second 8-7.

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