Published on Wednesday, 16 May 2012 11:20
by Ryan Schwab
FORT WAYNE - While they may have hit a fork in the road, the Carroll Varsity Baseball team found its way to a familiar destination.
Following a tough 14-4 loss at Homestead last Tuesday night, the Chargers posted an 11-2 win over Columbia City on Thursday and a 5-1 win over DeKalb on Tuesday to earn a share of the Northeast Hoosier Conference championship for the fourth straight year.
The Chargers (18-7, 6-1 NHC) still have a chance to be the outright NHC Champion if Bellmont defeats Homestead on Thursday afternoon in Decatur. Bellmont lost to East Noble 1-0 on Tuesday to fall out of the NHC title picture while Homestead defeated New Haven 16-4.
If Homestead wins, they share with Carroll, but a loss to Bellmont would be Homestead's second in NHC play, leaving Carroll as the only one-loss team.
Carroll is the first team in the 23-year history of the NHC to win four straight Conference titles. DeKalb won three straight from 1993-95.
“Four times in a row, with the way our Conference is put together, is a really big accomplishment,” Charger Skipper Dave Ginder said. “Our Conference is good. We stubbed our toe (against Homestead), but year in and year out, there aren’t going to be a lot of teams that go undefeated.”
“We did our part (against DeKalb) and hopefully we continue to get better.”
Senior Peyton Lengacher threw a complete game three-hitter to defeat DeKalb on Tuesday. Lengacher allowed one run and three walks and struck out five.
Sophomore Drue Tranquill provided the big blow with a two-run home run as part of a three-run second inning.
Junior Ross Koble added three hits and scored twice and Lengacher and seniors Tanner Ginder and Elliott Ford each drove in a run.
Against Columbia City, Carroll scored in each of the first five innings and never trailed.
Koble had a two-run double in the second inning and sophomore Taylor Goshen hit a three-run double as part of a four-run third inning.
“Getting some early runs (in both games) has helped free some guys up,” Coach Ginder said. “Ultimately, it has come down to pitch selection and we have done a better job of that.”
The 2012 IHSAA Sectional draw was released on Tuesday. Carroll drew a first round bye and will play the winner of the North Side-East Noble game on Monday, May 28 at 10 a.m.
DeKalb and Northop and Columbia City and Snider are the other match-ups in the bracket.
The Sectional Championship game will be Memorial Day, Monday at 7 p.m.
Carroll Freshman Grant Inman is tagged by Columbia City catcher Derek Lamle during the third inning of Thursday's Baseball game at Carroll High School. Carroll defeated Columbia City 11-2.