Serra Catholic graduated all of its top pitchers from last year’s section-championship team. While the names have changed this season, the results have not.
Logan Exler pitched five strong innings, and Serra Catholic hammered out 15 hits and flashed leather as well during a complete 11-1 defeat of Brentwood in a battle for first place in Section 3-2A on Saturday afternoon in McKeesport.
The win puts the Eagles alone atop the section at 3-0, one game ahead of Brentwood and Jeannette.
“I think we improved offensively a little bit today,” Serra Catholic coach Brian Dzurenda said. “But our pitching is what has carried us this entire year. I thought Logan Exler just did a great job, and Alex (Glumac) came in and had a very efficient sixth inning.”
Exler pitched five innings and allowed one run on three hits. Glumac yielded a hit in a scoreless sixth inning.
The junior left-hander tries to keep it simple.
“I’m just going to focus on the batter,” Exler said. “I really just zone in and don’t pay attention to anything else.”
Serra Catholic scored more than enough for Exler in the second inning when it plated five runs against freshman left-hander Lucas Huntley of Brentwood.
Jordan Mastalerz singled home Dom DeMoss for the game’s first run. Then the Eagles added on with a Pat Brennan two-run double and a Glumac two-run single.
Zach Miklos doubled home DeMoss in the fifth inning for the Eagles’ sixth run.
Then the mercy rule kicked in when Serra Catholic batted around and scored five more runs off Brentwood sophomore Josh Greiner on RBIs by Glumac, Nico Eremic, DeMoss and Brennan.
Brennan and Moss had three hits each for Serra Catholic (8-1), and Eremic and Dom Puzzanchera each had two hits.
St. John’s commit Mark Black, the Eagles’ all-section junior catcher, was 1 for 2 and reached base four times, twice on walks.
Brentwood fell to 5-2 overall and saw its three game win streak come to an end. The Spartans managed only four hits, and senior catcher Brandon Greiner had three of those hits including a single, double and solo home run in the fourth inning for the team’s lone score.
While the win was important and impressive, Dzurenda knows the team needs to keep improving as the end of the first half of section play hits next week.
“We’re young, we’re improving every day and I think we’re in good position. We just talked about the seat at the banquet table at the end of the year, and we want to be in position where we’re one of the top seeds at the end of the year.”