Fairfield finding a groove, cruises to 13-0 win over Middies

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Caption
Fairfield High School senior Evan Trentman talks about Saturday's 13-0 victory over Middletown at Joe Nuxhall Field.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Tommy Begley likes most of what he’s seen during his short tenure as Fairfield High School’s head baseball coach.

The Indians improved to 4-1 overall and 3-0 in the Greater Miami Conference on Saturday, battering Middletown 13-0 in a five-inning affair at Joe Nuxhall Field.

“We have no complaints right now,” said Begley, a Tribe varsity assistant last season. “We really like the way the boys are playing. They work hard in practice, and they’re learning how to practice. I think that’s the toughest thing in high school baseball is teaching your guys how to practice. Right now, everything’s going smoothly.”

Fairfield shared the GMC championship with Mason last season. It was the Indians’ first conference crown since 2001.

“It comes up almost every day,” FHS senior left fielder Evan Trentman said of trying to repeat in the GMC. “We’re playing our baseball and getting back to where we left off last year.”

“We want to stay consistent and win 20 games and compete for the league title every year,” Begley said. “That’s what we hope to bring here. We preach it, and we work hard.”

Visiting Middletown (0-3, 0-3) wasn’t competitive in Saturday’s game, falling behind 3-0 in the first two innings before getting buried by a 10-spot in the third.

Trentman drove in three runs for Fairfield. Andrew Sams was 2-for-2 with three runs and two RBIs, while Kaleb Ford plated a pair of runs.

“We can tune up our defense a little bit … but our hitting’s been great,” Trentman said. “We worked all offseason. We hit almost every single day, in the cages, anywhere we could find to hit.”

Noah Johns, Jarrenn Thomas and Austin McFaddin did the pitching for the Middies. Johns went the first 2.1 innings and took the loss.

Noah Bauman, Brock Mathis, Matt Scowden, Nolan McWhorter and Erick All contributed an RBI apiece for the Indians. Bauman and McWhorter collected doubles, and Bauman scored three times.

“We hit the ball well today. Barreled shots … I’ll take that every day,” Begley said. “We did a good job of keeping a consistent aggressiveness.”

Kurt Lange pitched four innings to earn the win. Tyler Morgan completed a two-hitter for the Indians’ hurlers.

Johns and Caleb Caudill had singles for Middletown.

“We were flat the whole game and swung at bad pitches,” Middies coach Wes Mercer said. “We were aggressive, and that’s what we want our kids to be. Our problem is we’re not picking the right pitch. We’re not seeing the pitches and swinging at something we can barrel up. We’re swinging at stuff on the black.

“We had some positives that came out of the Hamilton games. I’m not too sure there’s any positives here. I guess the only positive thing is we can kind of use this as a building moment and talk to them about keeping their heads up and not looking so defeated after the third game of the year against a good baseball team.”

Begley said he wasn’t worried about his players taking Middletown lightly.

“It’s still early in the season, so guys are still excited to come out no matter who the opponent is,” Begley said. “They’re not really looking at the standings and stats yet. We’ve been preaching about playing the game, not the opponent. It doesn’t matter who we’re playing. We just want to go out there and play the best brand of baseball that we can, and I think today was a good example of that.”

His assistant coaches include fellow Hamilton graduates Adam Grissom and Jordan Conley. Andrew Guenther is the only Fairfield grad on the varsity staff.

The Indians are scheduled to face the Middies at Lefferson Park on Monday. The expected pitching matchup is Scowden for Fairfield and Caudill for Middletown.

Middletown 000-00—0-2-1

Fairfield 21(10)-0x—13-10-0

WP – Kurt Lange (2-0); LP – Noah Johns (0-1). Records: M 0-3, 0-3 GMC; F 4-1, 3-0 GMC