By Brittany Llorente
VERO BEACH - The Vero Beach High School Indians took advantage of errors made by the Treasure Coast High School Titans to win 13-3 last Friday at home.
The first innings had strong 1-2-3 outs for both teams, a good start for both teams.
The second inning started the Indian's momentum with 10 batters to the plate. Austin Todd, John Corso and Kellen Cooney loaded the bases.
Scott Wright swung straight at the Titan shortstop, who overthrew it to the first baseman.
The error at first sent Todd's pinch runner, Tyler Thomas, Corso and Cooney around the bases for the first runs of the game.
Wright, Shawn Ramsey and Chris Kazen continued with three more runs and ended the inning with only three hits and one man left on base.
The Titans fought back in the third inning.
David Martinez and Kevin Croke hit consecutive singles. Matt Lewis hit a ball straight to shortstop Kazen, who made a fielder's choice to second to get Croke out.
Richard Furline swung hard on the next at bat and scored a triple. Martinez and Lewis ran home followed by Furline on a single by Alvin Swoope.
The Titans cut the Indian lead in half 6-3 going into the bottom of the third.
"We knew that this was going to be a dogfight," said Indian's Coach Jeff Steinman. "We hit throughout the line-up tonight. Although we hit the ball well, we made the most of (the errors)."
The bases were again loaded by Austin Green, Cooney and Thomas.
Wright hit a single to bring Green home and Ramsey hit a double to run in Thomas and Cooney.
Wright ran it in on a wild pitch and ended the third with four runs, three hits and a score of 10-3.
The fourth inning started with another 1-2-3 against the Titans.
"We now know we need to come out with more fire next time," said Swoope. "We can't put our head down and I think that was our biggest problem as a team. We have to come out and keep our head up."
The Titans made a pitching change from Croke to Phil Naclerio.
Indian Jordyn Cruz took a base on balls, and his pinch runner, Thomas Stirrat, ran home on a double from Corso.
At the bottom of the fifth, Alan Mercedes replaced Naclerio for the Titans. He struck out his first batter and the outfielders took care of the rest of them for the rest of the inning.
The Titans had no runs and one hit in the next inning.
The start of the sixth looked good for the Titans. Green hit a single. Mercedes struck Jared Tatum out.
The high school mercy rule says that if a team is up by 10 points at the end of an inning, the game is over.
With two outs and one man on base, Corso took to the plate. He swung, and he swung hard.
The ball flew out of the park and the homerun propelled Green and Coros home to end the game at 13-3.
"I knew I was going to get the fast ball and I just hit it as hard as I could," said Corso. "After this game and this home run, I feel good about next week."
Titans coach Kyle Smith said this next week of practice, before the play-offs, was going to be rough on the team.
"We didn't play well and they played really well," said Smith. "We just have to get on the bus and forget about this. We have things to look forward to.
"We need to work on everything and every aspect of the game. We have a week of practice and there isn't a single thing we won't cover," he said.