It was a successful week for the Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy baseball team.
The Royals sandwiched wins over Principals' Athletic Conference rival Fairless around a blowout of non-conference foe Hudson Western Reserve Academy.
The week began with a home loss to Canal Fulton Northwest, another non-conference opponent, in which head coach Jason Herblet sat most of his main pitchers so they could get some rest for the week ahead.
CVCA's first win over Fairless was a 1-0 thriller April 17 at home.
Senior Steven Taylor went the distance, yielding just 2 hits and striking out 7.
"Steven battled," said Herblet. "Anytime he's pitching, we've got a good chance to win the game. He mixes his pitches up well and places them well, too. He's just a smart pitcher."
Taylor helped himself by knocking home the only run of the game in the bottom of the fifth inning when his single drove in senior first baseman Matt Miller, who had a double and single.
Sophomore right fielder Taylor Sobiech had 2 singles, while senior left fielder Chris Fair and junior center fielder Josh Thacker each had 1 single.
On April 18, CVCA routed Western Reserve 16-2 on the road in a game shortened due to the 10-run rule.
"We finally got our bats going," Herblet said. "It was good to get our confidence back. We had guys hitting the ball all over the place."
CVCA scored a run in the first inning, 2 in both the second and third, 8 in the fourth and 3 in the fifth.
Taylor had 3 singles, 4 RBIs and scored a run.
Sophomore third baseman Josh Junko also had 3 singles plus 2 runs scored and a stolen base.
Fair and junior middle infielder Drew Wilson each had 2 singles, an RBI and scored twice. Fair also had 2 stolen bases.
Miller had a double, 2 RBIs and scored a run.
Junior outfielder Matt Henning had a double, an RBI and scored twice.
Thacker had a single, an RBI, 3 runs scored and a stolen base.
Junior second baseman Dylan Nichols had a single, an RBI, scored 2 runs and swiped 2 bags.
Sobiech had a single and 2 RBIs.
Senior infielder James Hancock knocked home a run and Engle scored a run.
"We also had a big enough lead where we were able to get some of our other pitchers some time on the mound," said Herblet.
Sobiech started and went two innings in earning the win. He gave up a run and two hits while walking one.
Henning pitched an inning, and then Matthew Engle came on to pitch the fourth, walking two, and senior Luke Leonard pitched the fifth, yielding a run and two hits while fanning 2 and walking one.
The next day, on April 19, CVCA's bats came through again as the Royals amassed 16 hits as they easily beat Fairless on the road 8-1.
CVCA scored 3 runs in the first inning, 2 in the third and one apiece in the fourth, fifth and sixth.
Thacker had three singles, an RBI, three runs scored and two stolen bases.
"Josh is seeing the ball very well," Herblet said. "He's stepping up in key situations."
Sobiech had three singles and an RBI.
Wilson, Fair, Hancock and Miller each had a pair of singles. Wilson also had 2 RBIs and scored a run, Fair also scored a run and stole a base, Hancock added an RBI and scored a run and Miller also knocked home a run.
"Chris is really hot," the coach said of his team's leading hitter whose batting average is in the vicinity of .500.
Henning and Junko each singled. Henning added 2 RBIs and scored a run, while Junko scored a run and swiped a bag.
Wilson went the distance, allowing only 2 hits while fanning 7 and walking just 1.
"When Drew takes the mound, just like with Steven, he battles, competes and gets after it," the coach said. "He places his pitches well. Fairless had a tough time getting anything off of him."
CVCA lost 11-3 to Northwest April 13.
Junior Lance Rybka started and went 1 1/3 innings, giving up 3 runs, just 1 hit and walking 6 batters.
Junior Tommy Piazza came on and went 3 2/3 innings, yielding 5 runs, 5 hits, striking out 2 and walking 1.
Nichols and Leonard pitched the last two innings.
The game was actually tied 3-3 heading into the top of the sixth inning when Northwest put up a 7-spot.
Fair had 2 singles and stole a base.
Junko had a single, scored a run and swiped a bag.
Hancock and Taylor each singled. Hancock had a stolen base, too.
Wilson scored a run, and Leonard and Miller each swiped a bag.
CVCA was scheduled to take a 7-4 overall record and a 5-2 PAC mark into a home game April 20 against conference rival Tuscarawas Valley and, two days later, on April 22, was set to host non-conference foe Medina Highland in a doubleheader, but the results were not available at press time.
CVCA is scheduled to travel to PAC rival Indian Valley April 24 and, two days later, on April 26, host the Braves. First pitch for both games is set for 5 p.m.
The Royals are scheduled to host non-conference opponent Ravenna April 28 at 4:30 p.m.
On April 29, they are set to compete in the Cuyahoga Falls City Championship against Woodridge at 12:30 p.m. and against Cuyahoga Falls at 2:30 p.m at Water Works Park.