PERRY TOWNSHIP – With the success of the Bath boys basketball team this past season, Colin Gossard didn’t have a great deal of time to work on his pitching.
But it sure didn’t show in Wednesday’s nonconference baseball game at Perry.
Gossard did not allow a run in his four innings of work against the Commodores. The senior right-hander scattered two base hits, while striking out nine batters as he helped lead Bath to a 16-1 victory over Perry.
Gossard was efficient as he didn’t walk a batter and threw just 47 pitches in the shortened five inning run-ruled game.
Taren Sullivan, the top scorer on the Bath basketball team, came in to close out the game on the mound in the fifth. Sullivan gave up the lone Perry run.
“It’s been about a week-and-a-half now, trying to get my arm back into shape,” Gossard said. “I’ve been tossing at practice, then coming out here tonight and trying to throw strikes. I just felt really confident in what I had tonight. My defense backed me up. So, I just threw strikes and let them make plays.”
Bath (3-0) did not commit an error, while Perry (0-2) recorded five miscues on the field.
Bath coach Brian Jesko didn’t want to overwork Gossard in his first regular-season appearance.
“We think that our pitching is going to be one of our strengths this year with our four seniors,” Jesko said. “We’re very pleased with Colin’s work in his first outing. Him and Taren and some of our other guys got a little bit of a late start with the basketball run. But we wanted to put him (Gossard) on a pitch count and extend him out to maybe the high 40s or 50s in his first outing. He threw the ball exceptionally well. I think the biggest thing about today was that he had nine strikeouts and no walks. So, he came out of the gate and had command of his pitches.”
Bath also was solid at the plate, pounding 13 base hits. Cam Clark led the way for the Wildcats, going 3-for-4 with two RBIs. Tyler Stahr and Eric Jordan each had two hits for Bath.
Perry starting pitcher Chad Henson lasted just 1 1/3 innings before being lifted. Henson was touched up for seven runs on two hits. R.J. King came in from his shortstop position to take over on the mound in the second inning. King pitched the rest of the game for Perry.
Bath got off to a strong start, scoring seven runs on three hits in the top of the second inning. Jared Davis, the cleanup hitter, had a single that plated two of those runs.
Bath scored three runs in the third, two in the fourth and added four more in the fifth.
Perry’s designated-hitter Andrew Russell (2-for-2) smacked a double in the fifth inning, which eventually led to the Commodores’ one run. Bruce Hodges, who came in to pinch-run for Russell, eventually came around to score, thanks to two wild pitches by Sullivan.
“Offensively, our guys seem to be seeing the ball pretty well,” Jesko said. “They’re taking good cuts, good at-bats at the plate. So, I’m pleased with the guys on both sides of it today.”
Said Perry coach Mark Hoersten, “This is only our second time out. It’s early yet. Bath is a very good team and Gossard is a really nice pitcher. …He brings it up there really well. And early in the year, we haven’t seen anyone throw like him.”
Bath 16, Perry 1
WP–Colin Gossard. LP–Chad Henson.
2B–Chase Clark (Bath).
Records: Bath 3-0; Perry 0-2.