STM steps up to plate against Mary in baseball

STM steps up to plate against Mary in baseball
Posted on 09/25/2023

stm baseball 1By Larry Moko

The St. Thomas More Knights are looking good in their brand new pinstripe baseball uniforms. And their overall performance on the diamond Tuesday wasn’t too shabby, either.

More topped the St. Mary Crusaders 11-0 in Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic high school action at Alexander Park.

“We were allowed to get new uniforms, so we wanted to try something different,” Knights coach Nick Memme said. “It’s a new era, I guess, with new coaches.”

Instead of white pants, the players are now dressed in black. “It’s fun to try something new. We switched up everything.”

Pitcher/shortstop Stephen Morelli of the Knights has been with the team for five years and approves of the new look.

“I’m not a huge fan of the (New York) Yankees,” he said, “but I love the pinstripes. I think the uniforms are great.”

The Crusaders were held hitless by starting pitcher Morelli and reliever Carter Hand. A veteran lefthander, Hand worked the final three frames of the contest which lasted five innings.

The visitors pulled away with five runs in the first inning and four more during their next turn at the plate.

In addition to striking out four of the six batters he faced, Morelli sparked the Knights offence with three solid ground singles through the infield and a walk. He also stole four bases, scoring twice.

“He’s an awesome leadoff guy to have,” the More coach said. “He’s super fast. He knows how to steal and run the bases.”

As for his pitching, Morelli said his slider was breaking effectively.

“This is my last year of high school,” the product of the West Mountain Cougars organization said. “I just want to contribute as much as I can before I go.”

The Knights took advantage of three hit-batsmen plus a bases-loaded walk in the top of the first. Those runners all came around to score on Grady Aussem’s single and Brandon Tunstead’s three-run double to centre field.

In the second, Hand drove in a run with a single and Declan Elwood socked a two-run double to left.

The first Crusader to reach base was Noah Canzio, who got hit by a pitch with two out in the fourth. Hand was able to hold on to the shutout in the fifth after Josip Meze drew a walk and Ethan Pozdrowski was safe on a throwing error.

Hand finished with eight strikeouts.

More capped the scoring with a pair of fifth-inning runs – thanks to Alex Van Raay’s sacrifice fly and another single by Hand.

More is seeking its third consecutive appearance in the championship game. Said Memme: “We’ve got a lot of returning players but the competition is going to be really tough.”

Elsewhere, the defending- champion Bishop Tonnos Titans defeated the St. John Henry Newman Cardinals, 10-0.