PERU — Tom Keegan wanted to know what the secret behind the St. Bede Bruins hitting Monday afternoon after they rapped out 15 hits to beat his Hall Red Devils 13-3 at the Academy. He stopped St. Bede slugger Logan Bima at home plate after the game and asked him what he had for lunch. When Bima said pizza, Keegan replied, “Don’t eat any more pizza the next time you play us, OK.”
The Bruins certainly had a lot of pizazz at the plate. Eight different Bruins had at least one hit in the game. Bima belted three hits and drove in three runs, including a long triple in the second inning. The Bruins went deep down the lineup with No. 9 hitter Sam Lucas bringing up the bottom with three hits and four RBIs.
Bima said it’s a good feeling when everyone’s hitting like that.
“Everybody’s in a groove. One after another it keeps going,” Bima said. “Sam had a lot of hits and hit a lot of line drives and helped us out a lot.”
Both teams scored one run in the first inning. then the Bruins went to work in the second. Brad Groleau drew a two-out walk and took off for second as Bobby Morrow ripped a base hit to center. When the ball was misplayed in the field, Groleau came all the way around to home to the Bruns a 2-1 lead.
Bima ripped a long drive to center field on the fence-less Bedan diamond for a triple to make it 3-1. Keegan was wondering if his team should call for a fair catch when the ball landed on the adjacent Bruin football field.
“They’re known to swing the sticks, especially here on the home field,” Keegan said. “Heck, I never know what to tell my outfielders. Play shallow and they’re going to burn you. Play deep and they’re going to dump it in front of you. I think the one Bima hit to center you should have been playing at the 50-yard line and catch it. That was a bomb.”
Bima said the fence-less outfield makes things interesting.
“You’ve got to run. It teaches you never watch the ball. Got to put your head down and run,” he said.
The bottom half of the Bruins’ order got in on the fun in the third. Ronnie Mudge led off with a triple and switched spots with Joel Inciong, who followed with a RBI triple to right. Austin Schwab walked before Lucas delivered a RBI hit. Morrow and Bima followed with two-out RBI hits as the Bruins scored five times to go up 8-1.
Hall (14-6) cut into the Bruins’ lead with two runs in the fourth. Starting pitcher Brian Kruse led off with a single and scored on a double by battery mate Jon Kosciewicz. Miguel Villareal, who played third base like a vacuum cleaner, singled and Rhodes Garland walked before Nolasco drove in a run on a force out to make it 8-3.
Lucas wasn’t done yet. He added a RBI hit and scored on Bima’s groundout in the fourth. He had a two-run single in the sixth to make it 12-3.
Damin Smith, who relieved Bruin starter Adam Burgess in the sixth, sent everyone home for dinner a little bit early with a base hit through the Hall infield to drive in the 13th and final run to bring down the 10-run rule curtain.
Burgess, a senior southpaw, scattered seven hits over five innings while departing with a 10-3 lead for the win. He struck out two and walked two. Keegan said “if we did get on base, he’d pick us up.”
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