Your Prep Sports
SOLON– Heading into the season Solon returned a proven lineup capable of putting up runs and a defense filled with athletic playmakers.
Seemingly the only question mark standing in the way of a huge season for the Spartans was pitching.
The Spartans have used depth and strong seasons from seniors to emphatically answer any perceived questions about their pitching staff.
Seniors Drew Turner and Brady Jeworrek each tossed complete game gems on Monday as Class 3A sixth-ranked Solon swept Clear Creek Amana (11-12, 9-9) in a WAMAC cross-division doubleheader in Solon.
“Some of the games we’ve been struggling it has been our pitching because we have a really good offense,” Turner said. “If we can pitch like this, we are going to be really hard to beat.”
Turner tossed a three-hitter in the opener, outdueling Clear Creek Amana ace Brock Reade in a 2-1 Solon win.
Jeworrek overcame a rough 39-pitch first inning in the nightcap as Solon rallied for a 5-2 win to improve to 20-7 on the season and 16-2 in WAMAC play.
“We have our dudes that we trust in big situations, big games and then we’ve had other guys step up,” Jeworrek said of the Solon pitching staff. “A lot of guys are throwing well.”
The strong outings from Turner and Jeworrek on Monday came on the heels of a doubleheader sweep of Mount Vernon on Friday in which starters Brayden Ricketsen and Blake Timmons allowed just seven hits and one unearned run over 12 2/3 innings.
“We had two guys throw great against Mount Vernon and give up one run in a doubleheader and then to turn around and give up three runs in a doubleheader tonight you have to have depth,” Solon coach Keith McSweeney said. “One thing about our senior class is that we have a lot of pitching depth, that’s something that is really benefitting us when we can turn around our three and four guys and go against their one and their two and match them.”
Turner matched Reade pitch for pitch in the opener.
Solon got on the board in the fourth when Blake Timmons reached on an error and later scored on a Gehrig Turner RBI groundout.
The Spartans took a 2-0 lead in the sixth on back-to-back doubles by Kinnick Pusteoska and Gehrig Turner.
“The Reade kid is a returning all-state player and we were able to grind at bats and then we got to that third or fourth at bat and we were seeing it better and starting hitting some gaps,” McSweeney said. “I was proud of that approach.”
The two-run cushion was enough for Drew Turner who worked around consecutive walks to open the seventh inning.
After a sacrifice bunt moved the runners up Turner got Ty Fuller to ground out to short and leadoff hitter Sam Young to fly to center to end the game.
“I was most proud of him when he faced some adversity,” McSweeney said of Turner. “Walking the first two guys in the seventh in a two-run game a lot of things could go wrong and he bowed his neck and got out of that and got us a win.”
Turner struck out four and walked three while improving to 4-2 on the season.
“I threw the splitter really well today and I located the fastball,” Turner said. “When I missed I missed high so it was easy adjustments.”
Jeworrek followed up Turner with a complete game of his own.
After allowing two runs on three hits and throwing 39 pitches in the first inning Jeworrek held the Clippers to just a pair of singles over the final six innings.
“It was big for him to get out of that first and realize we had seven at bats,” McSweeney said. “They didn’t score the rest of the game and that was it.”
The senior right-hander struck out five and walked four in the win that moved his season record to 2-0.
“Throwing strikes is pretty much all I can do, I don’t have much gas behind it,” Jeworrek said. “I throw strikes and I know our defense has my back.”
Solon scored all five of its runs in the sixth, a rally that started with a leadoff single by Brett White.
Pusteoska plated White with a double over the right field wall and the tying run scored on a Clipper fielding error.
Cade Chapman had an RBI infield single and the Spartans added runs on a throwing error and a wild pitch while taking control.
“It doesn’t matter if we are down two or four we still have the whole game and I knew our team can get the bat on the ball and find gaps,” Jeworrek said. “Once we got guys on base I knew we would score them.”
Clear Creek Amana 000 000 1 – 1 3 1
Solon 000 101 x – 2 4 1
W – Drew Turner L – Brock Reade
2B – SOL: Kinnick Pusteoska, Jackson Ryan, Gehrig Turner
Clear Creek Amana 200 000 0 – 2 5 2
Solon 000 000 x – 5 5 1
W – Brady Jeworrek L – Sam Young
2B – SOL: Kinnick Pusteoska