Brookfield East pitchers Brah, Carstens showing good stuff
But Spartans' hitting leaves something to be desired
If the Brookfield East hitters can get their act together, the Spartans could be a formidable team down the stretch.
It was a tough week for the Spartans offense, who managed one, one, zero and three runs in an 0-4 week, which gave them nine losses in their last 10 games and a 6-13 record overall. They are in last place in league play with a 2-10 record.
East lost close games to Greater Metro Conference opponents Oak Creek, Marquette and Brookfield Central to start the week. They closed out the week with a 4-3 loss to Waukesha North in a non-conference tilt.
"To have the youth and inexperience that we have had at the varsity level and in, 21 innings, (lose) 11-2 to the top three teams in our conference shows how far our guys have come," first-year coach Nicholas Wycklendt said. "And I like where we're at going forward.
"We need to put our game together to go forward to be a dangerous team in tournament and rest of the season. We need to push for a .500 record.
"Besides from wins and losses, we're playing a lot better than what our record shows."
Dustin Brah pitched well but dropped a 5-1 decision at Oak Creek on June 16, as the Knights had three pitchers hold East to four hits.
Brah, a senior, pitched six innings, scattered eight hits, walked one and fanned two in taking a complete-game loss.
The Knights scored twice in the third and fifth innings and once in the fifth, while all the Spartans managed was four hits off Matt Hamilton (4.2 innings), Jesse Sustachek (1.1 IP) and Joey Richter (1 IP). They combined for four walks and nine strikeouts.
Junior Dan Magyar had two of the Spartans' four hits and their only RBI.
The next day the Spartans hosted Marquette and once again their hitters left the pitcher holding the bag.
Brad Carstens pitched a complete game, scattered 12 hits, walked four and fanned seven, but dropped a 2-1 decision to two Hilltopper pitchers — Armando Barron (5 IP, 4 BB, 7 K) and Nick McLees (2 IP, 5 K).
Marquette took a 1-0 lead in the third inning and East tied it in the fourth.
The Hilltoppers scored the winning run in the sixth for the win.
East only had five hits, as Quinn Hyndiuk went 1-for-3 to lead the offense.
East's low point of the week was a 4-0 loss to Brookfield Central on June 19, as Luke Sommerfeld tossed a no-hitter (see cover story for details).
Brah once again pitched well (7 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 3 BB) but got the loss.
After getting rained out on June 20 against West Allis Hale, East got another fine pitching performance in a 4-3 loss to Waukesha North on June 21 at home in a non-conference match.
Sophomore Nick Davies pitched six strong innings in his first varsity start. "He kept the North hitters off balance," Wycklendt said. "I was pleased with how he did. We made a couple mistakes in the field which led to their runs and we weren't able to recover."
Jake Smith had a big 2-out, 2-RBI double to take the lead 3-2 in the fifth inning for East.
The Spartans had a chance to tie in the seventh inning with a runner in scoring position, but were unable to take advantage of the situation and could not bring him in.
"This was a game we should have taken, but didn't play to our capabilities," Wycklendt said. "I think we are starting to figure things out as a team. Hopefully in the next two weeks, our young guys can begin to play with more and more confidence. We need them to start stepping up as we get closer to the tournament."
The Spartans travel to Franklin to meet the Sabers on Thursday, June 26, at 5 p.m. Then on Friday, June 27, they host Plymouth in a non-conference game at 5:30 p.m.
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