Sometimes, Casey’s bat is mightier than the pen.
With no apologies to Ernest Thayer, Lockport’s version of Casey at the Bat, junior Casey Domski, smacked a bases-clearing double in the fifth, then added a two-run double in the sixth, sparking the Lions to an 11-4 comeback win over visiting North Tonawanda at rain-soaked Outwater Park.
Meanwhile, Lions junior southpaw Alex Weaver hurled the complete-game victory on the hill, fanning a career-best eight under the worst of weather conditions for baseball.
With the win, head coach Steve Styrzo’s team improved to 4-2 in the Niagara Frontier League.
“I think as the weather got worse, Alex got better — with the long innings and the weather — he pitched a good game,” Styrzo said.
“Guys like that — Weaver going strong and getting better and grinding it out in this weather and the rest of the guys just coming up big — I think they realize we can come back against anyone. We can be patient and attack the baseball at the same time.”
The visiting Jacks held the lead for most of the game. They plated three in the first as Shaun O’Lay doubled to left, then got singles from Neil Ferguson, Derek Wasiekewski and Josh Brosius to lead 3-0 after one.
NT plated another run in the third when Chris Mellott doubled to right, then scored on a wild pitch. But that’s all NT would do on the day offensively as Weaver bore down and got through quick innings the rest of the way.
“In the early innings, they were hitting them where we weren’t, but after that, when I started warming up and with our defense playing great behind me, we started mowing them down,” Weaver said.
“My sinker was fishing people, my fastball was tailing and I had good movement, which chased them out of the zone sometimes. But I couldn’t have done it without the offense. We came through together. We worked as a team to pull it out.”
With the rain coming down heavier and Weaver in command on the hill, Lockport bats got stronger in the bottom of the fifth, as freshman Tyler Fraas, who continues to play well above his years, singled, then consecutive singles by sophomore Colin Dougherty (2-for-5) and senior Rob Arlington loaded the bases.
Senior Nick DiMartile drew a two-out walk to NT starter Bob O’Connor (4 2/3 innings, 6 strikeouts) plating Fraas with Lockport’s first run, then sophomore catcher Danny Bronson took one for the team for a second straight inning, but this time, the hit-by-a-pitch plated Dougherty to make it 4-2.
Domski then delivered the big hit of the game, ripping a double to left that plated Arlington, DiMartile and Bronson to give LHS the lead for good, 5-4.
With his grandfather watching proudly in the stands, Lions sophomore Brad Wroblewski then stroked an RBI single to right plating Fraas. When the smoke cleared, the Lions had sent 12 batters to plate, chased O’Connor (who was relieved by Wasiekewski) and scored six runs to lead 6-4 after five.
“The pitch was right down the center of the plate,” Domski said of his three-RBI double. “I was thinking, ‘The count’s 0-2. Fastball. And I might as well swing if it’s there.’ “
The blue and gold weren’t done yet. In the bottom of the sixth, Arlington beat out an infield single, then took second on the wild throw from third. Lions sophomore Charlie Sobieraski cracked a line drive to left, plating the fleet-footed Arlington easily to make it 7-4 Lions.
DiMartile and Bronson walked to load the bases, then Sobieraski scored on a fielder’s choice, setting the stage for Domski’s second two-bagger of the night, a first-pitch blast to deep left that plated Bronson and Schneider, rounding out the scoring.
“It was right down the middle. I was thinking of swinging at the first pitch and I hit it all the way to the fence,” Domski said.
Added Styrzo, “Casey’s a nice addition out there playing outfield and swinging the bat well for us.”
Will. East 4, Starpoint 0
WILLIAMSVILLE — Zach Monell pitched a complete game, giving up seven hits and three earned runs for the Spartans (5-8, 3-5 ECIC II). Matt Miller was 2 for 3 from the plate, and Andrew Rankie had a double.
Albion 4, Roy-Hart 3
GASPORT — Surviving a seventh inning scare, Albion nipped Roy-Hart 4-3 Monday knocking the Rams from the ranks of the unbeaten and throwing the Niagara-Orleans League title race into a virtual tie.
Tyler Hughson made a leaping catch in deep centerfield for the final out to earn the thrilling victory for Albion as Roy-Hart left two runners stranded. The Rams had scored once with two ou in the inning on two walks and an error to cut the deficit to one.
Albion improves to 6-1 and Roy-Hart slips to 5-1.
Hughson also had a big day at the plate with an RBI triple during the Purple Eagles three-run fifth inning uprising as a sacrifice by Elliott Foos and a wild pitch plated the other two runs.
Albion scored what proved to be the game winner in the sixth on a single by Travis Downs and a wild pitch.
Roy-Hart’s other tallies came in the fifth inning on a two-run single by Andy Xapsos.
Earlier, the Rams left runners stranding at first and third in the first inning after a walk and a single by Ryan Metz.
Defensively, Albion also got a big over the shoulder catch from left fielder Pete Nesbitt in the third inning.
Lockport 12, NT 2
NORTH TONAWANDA — Lady Lions bats were swinging from top to bottom in Monday’s road win at NT to improve to 6-0 in the NFL and 9-0 overall. The Lady Jacks fell to 0-6 in the NFL.
Danielle Donorovich was 2-for-3 with two doubles and three RBIs, Patti Burdick was 3-for-3 with a double and two runs scored, Nora Passuite was 2-for-4 with a triple and two runs scored and fellow senior Kelly McKeever smacked a double, drove in a pair of runs and scored three runs.
Winning pitcher senior right-hander Kassidy McFall got the win, while Meghan Schneider came in relief and tossed the final two frames.
Next up for LHS is a game at 4:45 p.m. Wednesday at Grand Island.
Starpoint 6, Will East 0
WILLIAMSVILLE — Starpoint sophomore Ashley Owens tossed an impressive five-hit shutout, with three strikeouts and three walks to earn the pitching victory.
Also for head coach Joe Hill’s Lady Spartans (3-8 ECIC), freshman Allison Block smacked three hits, including a home run, sophomore Brianna Clark had two two hits and two RBIs and junior Emily Whitman also had two hits.
Starpoint returns to action at 4:45 p.m. today with a non-league contest against visiting West Seneca West.
Roy-Hart 4, Wilson 3
MIDDLEPORT — Roy-Hart pushed across a run in the bottom of the seventh inning on a sacrifice bunt by Ariana Henley to nip Wilson. Singles by Brianna Walker and Olivia Kelkenberg set up the threat.
Walker had two hits on the day including an RBI triple.
Taylor Fry went the distance on the mound for Roy-Hart, allowing four hits and striking out 13.
The loss drops Wilson to 3-4.
Orchard Park 15, Lockport 1
Aaron Quast netted the lone goal for host Lockport, assisted by Andrew Edbauer, falling to 3-5 overall and 0-3 in Section VI Class A.
Next up is a game at 5 p.m. Thursday at Clarence, followed by a 7 p.m. contest Friday at Akron.
Silver Creek 20,
WILSON — Tyler Martin had six goals and two assists and Zachary Magoon added two goals and an assist for the Lakemen (7-2, 4-2 Class C).
Grand Island 2
In a game played on Saturday, Lockport’s Roserita DiMillo netted three goals to lead the Lady Lions over the visiting Lady Vikings in NFL play.
Adding tow goals apiece for LHS were Jamie Dimond and Jillian Golding. Also scoring for the Lady Lions were Druscilla Updegrove and Lizzy Bull.