MARIETTA, Ga. - Team Mizuno Northeast Prospects separated themselves from the pack this morning with a 3-1 win over Indiana Prospects Blue in a battle for the top of the pool.
“Going into today there were four teams tied at 4-1 in our pool,” said Mizuno coach Nate Sorensen.
“We knew coming in that if we wanted to win this pool we had to win this game,” said pitcher Justen Voghel. “Now we’re at the top and we’re in a good position.”
“It was a big win,” added Nolan Kessinger. “We needed to win against the best team in our pool and we did.”
Team Mizuno Northeast Prospects struck first for two runs in the top of the third inning before the Indiana Prospects Blue got one back in the bottom half of the inning.
Nolan Kessinger produced a big insurance run in the top of the seventh inning when he drove in Calvin Holland on a line drive to left field.
“It was a 3-1 count and I was looking for a pitch away and I found a pitch away and I drove it left side and knocked in a run,” Kessinger said.
“(He) just sat on it and drove it to left field,” Sorensen added.
Voghel went five innings strong for Mizuno, striking out five Prospects hitters. He gave up only three hits and one run.
“I just mainly tried to pound the outside zone because hitters try to do too much with it,” said Voghel. “I had a great infield. I can’t make plays without them.”
Craig Corliss, who excelled at the plate today with a 3-for-3 game, was praised for his job behind the plate as well.
“Craig did a heck of a job behind the dish,” Voghel said. “It was a good game and I just threw strikes.”
Voghel threw 75 percent of his pitches for strikes in his five innings of work that only required him to throw 60 pitches.
“We came out ready to go,” said Sorensen. “We played good defense, got timely hitting, and our two pitchers threw phenomenal today too. I couldn’t be prouder of the boys right now.”
The team from Massachusetts has played very competitive baseball to be in the position they are in now to possibly advance to the playoffs. After losing their second game on Day 1 of the tournament, 4-3, they have won four straight games to stand at 5-1 with one game remaining. Team Mizuno has outscored its opponents 28-7 in that four-game span.
Team Mizuno Northeast Prospects will finish pool play tomorrow morning against Centerfield Baseball Academy at Johns Creek High School.
With the Game Ready Athletics at 4-1-1 and the Chattanooga Cyclones 15u at 4-1, Team Mizuno Northeast Prospects must win tomorrow morning to ensure they advance out of pool play.
“We are just gonna keep riding our pitching and timely hitting,” said Sorensen.
With the win today, Team Mizuno Northeast Prospects controls its own fate, which is exactly the position they want to be in. Tomorrow they will know just what exactly fate has in store.