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Unity played well in a busy week last week, winning four times, but dropped its third conference game of the season to Decatur St. Teresa.
The team began the week with a conference win at Clinton. The boys got six solid innings of work from Kip Brown and a strong seventh from Jacob Rice to win their fourth conference game of the year.
“We did a lot of good things,” coach Dan Cunningham said. “We bunted the ball, moved around well, put them in tough spots and got hits when we needed them.”
On Wednesday the Rockets kept rolling with area rival St. Joseph-Ogden coming to town. The teams traded runs in the bottom of the first and top of the second before Unity’s bats went to work, sparking a four-run second inning.
Aaron Larson gave back a couple of runs in the third, but Unity scored three more times to secure the victory. Jacob Rice drove in two runs, and Seth Tolliver hit a deep double in the victory. Larson earned his fourth win, pitching six innings against the Spartans.
“It’s always better to play with a lead, so getting those runs back early changed our approach to the game. It was important to score four runs in the second,” Cunningham said.
Unity did not play with the same sharpness on Thursday, however. In Decatur the Rockets got roughed up a bit: an uncharacteristic outing from Tyler Bialeshcki and less than the best from the rest of the team led to a loss to conference rivals St. Teresa.
“They are pretty good,” Cunningham said. “It was kind of a combination of their play and our errors once again, but I wouldn’t want to take anything away from them. I’m not so sure we played our best, but good teams sometimes do that to you.”
On Saturday the boys were able to recover nicely, winning twice and taking the Leroy Tournament crown for themselves.
A 3-5, five RBI game from Bialeschki and five good innings of work from Kip Brown helped Unity defeat Midland 20-0 in the first game. Delavan threatened the Rockets a little more, but not enough to stop their powerful offense. Unity beat Delavan 8-2 to win the tournament.
“The Delavan pitcher who started game two threw pretty well, and our kids did a nice job against him. He was throwing hard, and I thought they were real patient and made the right adjustments at the plate against him,” Cunningham said. “It was good to get a win.”
The Rockets (24-5, 4-3 OVC) have three road games this week: at Monticello on Tuesday, at Sullivan on Thursday and at Tuscola Saturday. Unity will host its regional playoff beginning Monday, May 18. Unity received the No. 1 seed and will not play until May 20.