Baseball starts season strong


Katie Counts

Matt Thorsten (12)

Having graduated two of OHS varsity baseball’s strongest pitchers Blake Dillow and Bailey Vuylsteke, there was some concern as to who would fill those shoes. But with a 7-1 start, it is evident that baseball does not have as much to worry about.

Baseball opened the season March 17-22 by advancing to the championship game of the Lindbergh-Mehlville tournament. They used solid pitching to beat Mehlville, Pattonville, Hazelwood West, and Lindbergh before losing to Vianney in the final game.

“I think really the straw, so to speak, that’s stirred the drink is our starting pitching,” head coach Rich Sturm said. “It’s been very good, very consistent. Those guys have worked deep in the games. I would add to that that we’ve gotten some timely hitting and really it’s been contributions all throughout the lineup.”

Matt Thorsten (12) pitched a 7-0 shutout against Mehlville in the opening game of the tournament. Andrew Leise (12) pitched a 6-1 game against Hazelwood West with Michael Stieren (12) closing out the game. Jake Werner (12) pitched an 8-3 win against Pattonville with Stieren closing the game once more. Michael Pope (12) threw a complete game against Lindbergh for a 3-2 win which had the a lot of meaning for many players.

“That was the first real team we played…that’s the competition we’re going to seek from here on out,” Jake Reed (12), who drove in the winning run, said. “But that gave us good confidence, because we walked into Vianney way more confident knowing that we beat Lindbergh.”

Since then, on March 25 OHS won both games of a double header against Belleville West 10-8 and 10-7. Also on March 28 they beat Kirkwood 5-4.

“We’ve won low scoring games, we’ve won high scoring games, we’ve won games where there was a moderate level of runs scored,” Sturm said. “Reflecting on the first seven games, I think that’s been the most impressive thing about this team. No matter what sort of game we’re in…they’re finding ways to win those games. They don’t quit.”

OHS will face Parkway Central at home on March 30 at 4:15 p.m..