The Elyria Catholic baseball team had its season come to an end with a 7-4 loss against Lutheran West in the district semifinals on Tuesday (May 16) afternoon.
EC finished the year with a record of 20-4.
Lutheran West jumped out to an early 6-0 lead after a six-run second. The Panthers were charged with four errors in that nightmare of an inning.
EC chipped away in the bottom of the third. Sophomore catcher Grant McClure walked and later scored on Tony LoParo’s double. LoParo was on third after an error and he scored on a wild pitch to bring the Panthers within four at 6-2.
Sophomore center fielder Leighton Banjoff led off the fourth with a solo homer to left field and the score stayed at 6-3 until the seventh when the Longhorns added an insurance run.
EC entered its final at-bat trailing 7-3 and sophomore pinch hitter Jack Laird started the seventh with a walk. After a strikeout, McClure was hit by a pitch and turned it over to the top of the lineup.
LoParo hit into a fielder’s choice before senior right fielder Jeff Spencer walked to load the bases. Junior second baseman Ryan Strittmather took first base on four pitches wide of the zone to walk in a run and bring Banjoff to the plate.
The all-everything center fielder laced a liner to the gap in left center but Lutheran West’s center fielder ran it down to end the game.
EC senior ace Andrew Abrahamowicz took the loss – his first of the season – despite a tremendous effort. After the defense let him down in the second frame, the University of Nebraska signee retired 10 straight Longhorns and didn’t allow the Longhorns to score again until the seventh.