A pair of five-run innings by Rockford Lutheran was the downfall for Mendota in a 12-8 loss to the Crusaders in Big Northern Conference action on March 26 at Faber Field.
The Trojans owned a 2-1 lead through three innings, but Lutheran struck for five runs in the fourth and five more in the fifth. Mendota kept things close with a tally in the fourth and four more in the fifth, but couldn’t get any closer.
Mendota only mustered two hits off of four Crusader pitchers – singles by Joel Escatel and Gavin Glazebrook. Jacob Stohr drove in three runs.
Lutheran touched up two Trojan hurlers for 14 hits. Glazebrook went 3 1/3 innings and allowed nine hits and six runs (four earned). He walked five and struck out two. Andrew Castaneda pitched the rest of the way and gave up five hits, six runs (four earned) and two walks.
Mendota and Lutheran hooked up again on March 28 in Rockford and the result was the same, a 13-8 Crusader victory in BNC play.
The Trojans led 5-3 after two innings, but Lutheran strung together three straight innings of scoring three, three and four runs to take a 12-5 lead. Mendota added three tallies in the sixth.
Mendota swung the bat better with 10 hits, six for extra bases. Escatel delivered a double, triple and three RBI, Ted Landgraf had two doubles and Austin Robinson doubled and drove in a pair. Breyden Lindenmeyer picked up two singles, while Castaneda had a two-bagger.
Johnnie Gonzalez was the losing pitcher for the Trojans, going three innings and allowing seven hits and seven runs (five earned). He walked four and struck out four. Mason DeFore hurled the final three innings and permitted six runs on five hits.
Mendota was blanked by Amboy, 7-0, in a nonconference game on March 29 at Amboy.
The Trojans picked up just three hits off of Amboy pitcher Mitchell McLaughlin, who went the distance to earn the victory. He struck out 15 of the 21 outs and walked just one.
Robinson singled twice for Mendota. Hunter Zimmerly paced the Clippers with two singles and a double.
Robinson got the call on the hill and permitted four hits and five runs (three earned) over five innings. He fanned eight and walked three. Castaneda pitched the final frame.
Rockford Christian cruised to an 18-5 win over the Trojans in BNC play on April 1 at Rockford. Mendota fell to 3-8 overall and 2-5 in the league.
The Royal Lions put the game out of reach in the first inning when they plated 13 runs.
Mendota scored four times in the fourth and once in the fifth, while Christian added five runs in the fourth to kick in the 10-run rule.
The Trojans had just four hits, including a double by Castaneda.
Landgraf started on the mound and was tagged with the loss, while DeFore finished the game. Only three of Christian’s runs were earned as Mendota committed eight errors.