Baseball is a simple game. Throw it, hit it and catch it. Castleton’s mindset from game-to-game couldn’t get any simpler either.”We approach each series and just try to win that series,” head coach Ted Shipley said.
The Spartans didn’t stray away from their philosophy over the weekend taking three-out-of-four games from North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) East opponent, Thomas College, pushing their record to 14-16 overall and 8-4 in the conference.
On Friday, April 15, Castleton took game one, 13-3, and game two, 15-4.
Thomas snuck in a win on Saturday in game one behind a stellar pitching performance from Jake Chamblee (seven innings, one earned run, two walks and five strikeouts) for a 4-1 victory but the Spartans bounced back in game two thumping the Terriers, 13-4.
“We would have liked to have gotten all four, because that would have put us in a good situation in terms of possibly hosting the conference tournament,” Shipley said. “But it was certainly good to take three-out-of-four from Thomas.”
Castleton used a thundering offense to bury the Terriers all weekend as the Spartans’ bats pounded out 36 hits for 42 runs, averaging 10.5 per game over the four-game set.
Right fielder Matt Eisenhuth highlighted the offense going 7-for-11 at the plate – a .636 batting average in four games – scoring five runs while driving in a team-high seven.
Statistics aside, Shipley is still pushing this team to improve.
It’s hard to believe considering what Castleton accomplished over the weekend. But that’s what coaches have to do when they know their team is capable of back-to-back NEAC East Division championships.
“We still need to improve in all areas [of the game]. We can pitch it better, we can become a better team offensively and we can improve defensively,” Shipley said. “If I had to pick one area – I would say if we can improve our pitch-by-pitch intensity we will become better. We tend to have too many little lapses that come back to bite us.”
The Spartans have four conference games remaining on their schedule before entering the NEAC East Division Playoffs against Lyndon State College, a team they have not lost to since 2008.
Castleton hosts Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute today at 4 p.m. before hitting the road to take on the Hornets in conference play on Friday, April 22 and Saturday, April 23.