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Burroughs’ bats silenced

Jim Riggio

The Burroughs High baseball team is proud of the fact it has beaten

Hart twice this summer.

But a chance for a three-game sweep wasn’t in the cards Thursday

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night for Coach Tom Crowther’s team.

Paced by a two-hit complete-game shutout from pitcher Tyler Fick,

Hart -- Burroughs’ Foothill League rival -- earned a 7-0 victory in

the quarterfinals of the Valley Invitational Baseball League

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playoffs.

The loss eliminated Burroughs from the playoffs.

“Mental fatigue sets in and we missed a lot of things that don’t

show up in the scorecard,” Crowther said.

Burroughs finished the summer at 21-12, something Crowther is very

pleased with.

“Even though we had a good summer, we need to get better

offensively,” Crowther said. “We have to get more aggressive with

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the bats. We’re going to need good pitching, great defense and timely

batting. We do those three things and we’ll be a playoff team.”

Burroughs struggled at the plate, as Josh Campbell’s second-inning

single and Devin Williams’ sixth-inning double were its lone hits.

Crowther’s team hit the ball out of the infield just two more

times.

For Fick, he said keeping the Burroughs batters guessing was his

big goal.

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“I was staying down in the zone, getting guys to ground the ball

out,” Fick said. “I was getting ahead of guys in the count.”

Hart scored twice in the first inning off Burroughs starter Ian

Disiere. Hart scored at least one run in every inning except the

fifth.

Ryan Matheson relieved Disiere in the fourth inning, but Hart

continued to hit the ball well.

Hart finished with 13 hits, six coming off Matheson.

“Hart’s good at getting a lead,” Crowther said. “You give them a

window and they find a way to add on to it.”

Burroughs had a chance to jump back into the game in the bottom of

the first inning, the only inning Fick struggled. Burroughs left the

bases loaded, as Josh Dultz was called out on a close play at first

base after Hart third baseman Nate Maddox hesitated making the throw.

“The first inning was ridiculous,” said Fick, who walked two and

hit one batter. “The sun was right in my face and I lost sight of my

catcher. The next inning, I didn’t have a problem with it.”

Hart Coach Jim Ozella was impressed with his junior left-hander

and said Fick has pitched better this summer.

“We put pressure on [Burroughs], and Tyler has done it like we’ve

expected him to,” Ozella said. “He’s one of our returning guys and

he keeps getting better and better.”

The only other inning Burroughs threatened to score in was the

sixth. Williams had a one-out double and went to third when Brent

Fekety reached base on a throwing error.

But Fick battled back to strike out Josh Dultz to get out of the

inning and preserve the two-hit shutout.

Burroughs earned a spot in the quarterfinals with a 4-3 win

against Hart on Monday.

The Indians will now look toward next season and have hopes to not

only do well in league, but also making it back to the CIF Southern

Section playoffs.


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