PREP ROUNDUP : Honikel’s Homer in Seventh Gets Servite Past Mater Dei
Chris Honikel’s two-run home run in the seventh inning gave Servite to a 7-6 victory over Mater Dei in the Angelus League opener for both teams Saturday at Servite.
Servite (5-2, 1-0 in league) led, 5-2, going into the seventh, mostly on the strength of Marcelino Sandoval’s three-run homer in the first and Josh Kliner’s run-scoring triple in the fifth.
Mater Dei (3-4, 0-1), which brought a .293 team batting average into the game, was ready to explode, however, and second baseman Dave Knuff lit the fuse.
With the bases loaded and two outs in the seventh, Knuff ripped relief pitcher Cliff Mierendorf’s first pitch over the left-field fence for a grand slam and a 6-5 Monarch lead.
Mierendorf quickly atoned for his pitching mishap by leading off the bottom of the seventh with a single to left and a stolen base. Honikel, a senior first baseman, then lined Andy Foster’s pitch of the left-field fence for the victory.
“It’s always like that with us and Mater Dei,” Servite Coach Mike McNary said. “In the last six or seven years, I can’t remember more that than two or three games that were decided by more than one run.”