PREP BASEBALL Boardman rolls to 14-4 victory
The Spartans improved to 4-0 with the win over Chaney.
By GREG GULAS
BOARDMAN -- Boardman High scored early and often while unleashing a 15-hit offensive barrage as it posted a 14-4 victory over visiting Chaney in high school baseball action Friday.
The Spartans improved to 4-0, while the loss broke a modest two-game winning streak for the Cowboys as they fell to 2-2-1.
Giancarlo Silvestri picked up the mound win, scattering five hits while going the route as the Spartans, a Division I final four participant a year ago, won for the 28th time in 34 outings dating back to last season under head coach Scott Knox.
"We had Giancarlo Silvestri on a 90-pitch count and he only needed 84 pitches to finish the game," Knox said. "That to me was an impressive outing this early in the season.
"Offensively we were on, as well, so there are no complaints by me about our overall play today."
Spartans score early: Boardman got out of the gate quickly as Tom Zetts' double keyed a three-run first inning.
Steve Franklin's two-run homer and Sean Weyant's double was part of a six-run second as the Spartans took a 9-0 lead after the first two innings.
"We felt that this was a big game for us this early in the season," Chaney coach Mike Popio said. "We wanted to use this as a measuring stick to see how we stack up against one of the best teams in the state of Ohio.
"We start three sophomores and we'll learn from this experience," he said. "We found out we need to improve defensively. We didn't make the plays early in the game and that proved costly for us."
An RBI single by Gary Boris in the third inning helped cut the Spartan lead to 9-4, but the Spartans countered with three runs in the bottom of the third to take a 12-2 lead.
Aaron Boris and Gary Boris then scored in the top of the fifth to trim the Boardman lead to 12-4, forcing the bottom half of the inning. The Spartans then added two more runs in the bottom of the inning before the Cowboys could get an out and the mercy rule was invoked.
"Boardman is going to hit the ball, so when you don't make the plays right at you, you are going to pay for the mistake," Popio added. "Today we found out firsthand how costly that could be."
Coach happy: For Knox and the Spartans, things seem to be coming together just four games into the season.
"We were aggressive at the plate and worked the count in our favor," he said. "We were on their fastballs and our timing was just right, a key component for us offensively this early in the season."
Weyant was the offensive star with three hits for the Spartans.
Franklin, Anthony Musolino, Scott Weimer and Ryan Vaughn all added two hits, with Franklin ripping a homer and plating four runs.
Musolino ripped a double among his two hits, while Zetts scored three times, as well.