By Chris Hagan
Review Staff Writer
This season has had a rocky start for the Lake Orion’s varsity baseball team.
Following a non-league win over Orchard Lake Saint Mary’s, they went on a five-game losing streak, including three losses to Rochester Adams.
But after Monday’s doubleheader against Rochester, they’re beginning to click and find a groove to put runs on the scoreboard.
Senior pitcher Mike Falter went one for three, including a home run in the first inning. Rochester answered with three runs in the second inning on an RBI double and a two-run home run.
Cam Miller replaced Falter but couldn’t stop Rochester’s momentum. He allowed six runs in 5 1/3 innings, walked three and struck out five. Rochester would go on to score four runs in the sixth inning and beat the Dragons 8-1.
“The first game we didn’t play very good. We didn’t hit very good and we had some chances to get back in but we didn’t have very good discipline so we couldn’t cash any runs in,” Coach Andy Schramek said.
As the sun began to sink into the west, the varsity boys started game two of their double header and Falter would prove himself once again.
Rochester scored first in the nightcap in the second inning, which would be their only score. Falter struck out eight over seven innings with no walks. And he didn’t stop there.
The sixth inning was Lake Orion’s saving grace as they would score seven to cement their win in game two.
Travis VandenHeuvel scored on an RBI single. Senior co-captain Bay Smart scored a two run double while Falter delivered a grand slam.
“Mike Falter and Bay Smart have just been outstanding. Mike pitched an outstanding game and we gave up one unearned run and he also hit a grand slam,” he said. “We finally started to execute a plan at the plate which we were rewarded for.”
Lake Orion will play Rochester again on Wednesday. According to Schramek, their game two win will have to be replicated going into Wednesday’s game.
“We have to throw three pitches for strikes to keep the ball balanced, Rochester is a good team and they showed us yesterday they can hit the fastball but we have to make sure we keep up with that,” he said. “Offensively we have to be able to use the whole field and run the bases well.”
Schramek has his sights dialed in to playing one game at a time. After sharing last year’s OAA Red Title with the Highlanders, he says he wants to focus on strengthening week by week.
“We all just have to step up. We just have to be a little bit tougher when we get runners in scoring position,” he said.
Game start for Wednesday against Rochester is 4:30 p.m. at home and Saturday the team travels to Northville for a doubleheader starting at 11 a.m.
By Chris Hagan