Thrice as Nice for Lakeland Baseball

Anthony Fusco slides into home. Credits: Deena Bell

SHRUB OAK, N.Y.— Lakeland’s baseball squad began the week with an impressive pitching performance by Matt Mikulski, in a 3-1 victory against visiting Albertus Magnus on April 17.

Mikulski threw a complete game in a 99-pitch effort while striking out 11.

“I was just going right after hitters trying to get the first-pitch strike over,” Mikulski said. “I felt like once I did that I was in control of the at bat.”

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The previous week, the Hornets spent in Florida and Mikulski felt that helped him as well.

“Getting the extra innings down in Florida not only benefited me seeing more batters but it helped the rest of our team seeing more game-like situations,” Mikulski said.

Lou Costanzo (1 for 3, 2 RBI) and Patrick Morelli (2 for 3, run scored) led the Hornets’ offense against the Falcons.

Lakeland fell the following day 6-0 at Rye before answering back with a thrilling 8-5 triumph against visiting Beacon on April 19.

Freshman Joey Vetrano stood out by going 3 for 4 with a single, double and a grand slam.

“I was seeing the ball very good today at the plate. It felt great to contribute to our team’s win,” said Vetrano, who pitches and plays the outfield and first base.

James Houlahan (3 for 4, two stolen bases) also starred in the victory.

“James is a smart hitter,” Vetrano said. “He was our best hitter last year and he continues to bring strong offense to the team.”

Hornet freshman Evan Berta was outstanding in relief, pitching four scoreless innings for the win.

“Evan is a great pitcher who has control of his pitches and keeps the hitters off balance,” Vetrano said.

The Hornets (4-1) finished off the week with a big road win at Arlington, 6-2, on April 22 with Mikulski (5.1 innings, 0 earned runs, 11 strikeouts) earning the win and Vetrano (1.2 innings) garnering the save.

Vetrano was also big at the plate, going 3 for 4 with two doubles, one triple and two RBI.

Yorktown lost against visiting Mahopac 7-2 on April 17, led by Tanner Dyslin (2 hits, one run) and John Kintish (2 hits, RBI).

The Huskers rebounded the next day at Ossining, beating the Pride 12-2, ignited by a 16-hit attack.

Jake Bichler (3 hits, 2 RBI, run), Joe Veca (3 hits, 3 runs), Dyslin (2 hits, 2 runs), Kintish (2 hits, 2 RBI, run) and Luan Biberaj (2 hits, RBI) each had multi-hit games for Yorktown.

“We understood the importance of this game, with it being the first of our league play and getting off to a slow start in earlier games, we finally made an adjustment and got swinging at the right pitches,” said Bichler, a Husker senior captain and shortstop/pitcher.

Yorktown got the jump on the Pride by going up 6-0.

“The six-run second inning is always a good way to make a statement in the beginning of a game, but I think it really fired the team up, and got us going to not let up the rest of the way,” Bichler said.

Matt Pupczyk started for Yorktown, pitching four innings, allowing just two hits and striking out three to earn the win at Ossining.

“Whenever we throw Matt out there, we know he’s going to compete and locate his pitches well, and I think he did just that,” Bichler said. “He trusted his stuff and it showed.”

The Huskers (3-5) swept Ossining by beating the visiting Pride 4-1 on April 20 with Bichler (run) and Nick Farda (RBI) each recording two hits apiece.

Anthony Fusco delivered five innings of one-hit, no-run baseball while striking out four to earn the win. Chris Sica struck out three in a scoreless sixth before Veca hurled the final inning to garner the save.

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