ALTON – Father McGivney baseball head coach Chris Erwin just takes the season one game at a time. That has kind of been the motto ever since their last loss back on March 23rd against Alton Marquette.
“We’re really just trying to stay one day at a time,” Erwin said. “It sounds funny and it sounds silly, but we really are. We’re just trying to stay in order and focus on the opponent across the field from us.”
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Fast forward to May 7th and they haven’t lost a game since Marquette going undefeated the whole month of April.
Their latest 6-2 win over Mater Dei had all the feels of a postseason game as the Knights threatened to end the streak, but it continues nevertheless as the Griffins boost their record to 25-3.
“It’s a natural rivalry with the two catholic schools and the game had a great feel to it. It’s a great late-season game for us,” Erwin said.
Starting on the mound for Father McGivney was junior Jackson Rodgers and he was absolutely dealing. He pitched six innings and picked up four strikeouts only allowing one walk.
“I was just trying to come out and attack hitters and pitch ahead,” Rodgers said postgame. “Defense was good behind me, so I was able to throw what I wanted without having to worry about it and it was just a good day to come out and compete.”
The Griffins definitely had to compete as this win was no walk in the park. For the first time since going on the streak, the Griffins got outhit. Hits were 8-7 Mater Dei as they had the bats going early.
The Knights struck first with a single run in the top of the second, but the Griffins came to play too.
Their five-run fourth inning was enough to seal the deal and keep their momentum going. The teams traded runs in the fifth, but it wasn’t enough from the Knights to pull off the upset.
Junior Daniel Gierer came in and closed out the game in the final inning, but the win was credited to Rodgers. It was his fifth as he is now 5-2.
Having himself a day offensively was junior Gabe Smith. He had a couple of hits including a double and also two runs.
Rodgers had three at-bats. He had two hits good for two RBI’s the most on the team on the day. Sam Chouinard, Nicholas Franklin, and Jacob McKee each picked up an RBI as well.
The Griffins have a bunch of baseball to play still before the postseason. As a matter of fact they’ll play every day this week but Sunday playing six games in six days.
“I did that on purpose,” Erwin said. “I wanted to make sure we’re prepared for the playoffs because we got a tough regional against Wesclin.”
They start their busy week today at 4:30 p.m. at home when they take on Nokomis.
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