Baseball: Mount Carmel bats blast off on St LaurenceJerry Houston, of Mount Carmel, bats against St. Laurence at Mount Carmel, Wednesday, April 25th, 2012 in Chicaago, IL. l Gary Middendorf~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 25, 2012 8:48PM
For two innings, the much-anticipated showdown Wednesday between No. 1 Mount Carmel and No. 2 St. Laurence lived up to its billing.
It took the Caravan one inning to turn it into a laugher.
Mount Carmel scored 10 runs in the third inning before visiting St. Laurence could record an out and cruised to a 16-2 victory.
The win kept the Caravan (23-0, 9-0) perfect on the season and in Catholic League Blue play. St. Laurence fell to 21-2-1, 8-1.
“We swung the bats well today,” Caravan coach Brian Hurry said. “Our entire lineup contributed.”
The first 12 batters in the third inning reached base for Mount Carmel. Jerry Houston ignited the scoring outburst with a two-run homer that broke a scoreless tie.
After Brent Novosel (2-for-4, 2 RBI) reached on an infield single, Tyler Laurisch (2-for-4, RBI), Sam Kint (2-for-4, 2 RBI) and Tom Hayes (2-for-3, RBI) roped consecutive doubles against Vikings starter Zach Lewis (5-1) that made it 5-0.
The rout was on.
Josh Gaal (2-for-3, 3 RBI) knocked in a run with a single, while Houston (3-for-4, 4 RBI) added a two-run double and Novosel an RBI single.
Laurisch’s double-play grounder were the first outs of the inning, but still produced a run to make it 11-0.
That was plenty of cushion for Mount Carmel starter Jason Gasser. The lefty gave up two runs in the fourth on a two-run single by Joel Rotkvich. Gasser (6-0) allowed five hits, walked three and struck out four.
Dan Pappas (2-for-2, 2 RBI) added an RBI double and Justin Sanchez a run-scoring single for the Caravan, which banged out 17 hits.
“We were just hitting, having fun,” Houston said. “This is what we worked so hard in the offseason for.”
The good news for St. Laurence, which had allowed more than four runs just once prior to Wednesday, is that it has another shot at Mount Carmel, at 11 a.m. Saturday in Burbank.
“It was a tough couple of innings,” St. Laurence coach Pete Lotus said. “They hit the ball. I’d be disappointed if we kicked the ball around or walked a bunch of guys. That wasn’t the case. The biggest thing for us is to forget about it and be ready for Saturday.”