Jersey Shore hammers Selinsgrove Seals, 16-1

JERSEY SHORE — Lexi Schuler fell behind 0-2 and Selinsgrove moved just a strike from escaping the first inning unscathed. Then Schuler fouled off a pitch. And another. And another.

After following off four straight pitches, Schuler roped a single. A batter later, Alyssa Stover scored her and Brianna Herman when she slammed a triple. Just like that the rout was on.

The Schuler sequence might seem small in a game that Jersey Shore easily won, but it spoke volumes. Nothing comes easy against these hard-hitting Bulldogs. Whatever happens at the plate, Jersey Shore is going to battle and make pitching it against it difficult.

That was the case again Thursday as Jersey Shore pounded out 16 hits, scored multiple runs in each inning and battered Selinsgrove, 16-1 in four innings. The Bulldogs (8-0, 5-0 HAC-I) remained undefeated, topped 10 runs for a fifth straight game and continued receiving strong production throughout the lineup.

“We all are really clicking this year and we’re all smashing the ball,” Stover said after going 3 for 4 with a triple, walk-off double and four RBIs. “If someone gets one hit we just come up one after each other and keep on going.”

“They were hitting solid. It seems like once we get a couple of them going it’s a ripple effect,” Jersey Shore coach Randy Smith said. “Everyone straight down the line keeps hitting. It’s great to see.”

Facing the Bulldogs these days, must feel like encountering Murderer’s Row. Everyone on this team can hit and has hit thus far. There are no soft spots in the lineup and there are reserves who have had big games as well.

Jersey Shore had six hits through two innings Thursday, then really broke things open with an eight-run, seven-hit explosion in the third. Schuler went 4 for 4 with three RBIs and four runs and was one of seven players who drove in at least one run. Eight players had hits by the third inning and Jersey Shore clinched the win when it scored four runs in the fourth, two each scoring on Schuler’s single and Stover’s double.

It is not like Jersey Shore was getting cheap hits either. NASA could have attached boosters to some of the rockets Jersey Shore players were hitting. The Bulldogs produced six extra-base hits and continued their assault this week that includes 33 runs and 40 hits the last two games.

Brianna Herman (2 for 4) hammered a three-run triple that highlighted the third inning when Jersey Shore went up 14-1. Bella Kriner and McKenna Russell (2 for 3) put Jersey Shore ahead, 4-0 in the second inning, hitting an RBI double and RBI triple, respectively. Hailey Stetts (2 for 3, 3 RBIs) ripped a 2-run double an inning later and winning pitcher Kylie Russell added an RBI single. Six straight batters reached base at one point and Jersey Shore received terrific timely hitting, scoring 13 two-out runs.

“If someone messes up or I mess up we know that everybody has each other’s backs and we pick each other up,” Herman said. “Each game we definitely improve on our hitting. It keeps getting better and better. It’s contagious. One person starts it off and everyone else follows along.”

Opponents and spectators are seeing the finished product. But Jersey Shore’s potent offense was born during the offseason. The Bulldogs relentlessly worked when others might have rested. They failed to win a playoff game for one of the few times in the 2000s last year and these Bulldogs are determined to do all they can to make this a memorable year.

Combine the work and talent with some strong chemistry and one has a team that has scored 83 runs in eight games while failing to reach 10 hits just once.

“We did a lot of open gyms and worked really hard in there and did a lot of condiditoning,” Stover said. “Coach worked us pretty good and it’s definitely paying off.”

“We’re having so much fun. Practices are fun and even when we have team bonding days we’re enjoying being together much,” Herman said. “We work really well together.”

As good as the offense has been, the pitching and defense also have been impressive. Russell improved to 4-0 in the circle and allowed one or no runs for a fourth time in five starts. The defense made no errors for a third time in four games and Jersey Shore has outscored four opponents, 57-12 after rallying in extra innings to beat Loyalsock 12 days ago.

Jersey Shore has many challenges ahead, starting Friday against defending District 4 Class AAAA champion, but it is right where it wants to be moving forward. And the Bulldogs are ready to keep fighting.

“We’ve told them from day 1, we’re taking it one game at a time and not looking ahead to anybody. Each team is going to have our full attention,” Smith said. “These girls have been working real hard. We’re coming together well as a team and it’s great to see.”

Jersey Shore opponents might disagree.

Selinsgrove 001 0-1 5 2

Jersey Shore 228 4-16 16 0

Kerstetter, Wynn (3) and Ramer. Kylie Russell and Alyssa Stover. W-Russell, (4-0). L-Kerstetter.

Top Selinsgrove hitters: Longacre 2-2, RBI; Kissinger 2-2. Top Jersey Shore hitters: Lexi Schuler 4-4, 3 RBIs, 4 R; Stover 3-4, 3B, 2B, 4 RBIs; McKenna Russell 2-3, 3B, RBI, 2 R; Brianna Herman 2-4, 3B, 3 RBIs, 2 R; Hailey Stetts 2-3, 2B, 3 RBIs, R; Aubrey Stetts 1-3, 2 R, SB: K. Russell 1-2, RBI; Bella Kriner 1-4, 2B, RBI, R.

Records: Jersey Shore 8-0, 5-0 HAC-I.

Mac Griswold and Dylan Young each had two hits and Aaron Best threw six strong innings of 2-hit baseball as Jersey Shore won its eighth straight game, beating Midd-West, 9-2. Griswold went 2 for 2 with an RBI and Young was 2 for 4 with a double and two RBIs as the Bulldogs (8-1, 6-0) remained undefeated in the HAC-I.

Baseball

Jersey Shore 9, Midd-West 2

Jersey Shore 101 103 3-9 8 4

Midd-West 000 002 0-2 3 1

Aaron Best, Brandon DePasqua (7) and Koby Peacock. Marc Piccioni, Cade Crossgrove (6), Denzel Sampsel (7) and Ben Kratzer. W-Best, (2-0). L-Piccioni.

Top Jersey Shore hitters: Mac Griswold 2-2, RBI; Dylan Young 2-4, 2B, 2 RBIs, R; Nate Ewing 1-4, RBI, R; Peacock 1-3, RBI, R; Timmy Saar 1-3, RBI, R; Sean Anderson 1-1, RBI, R. Top Midd-West hitters: Piccioni 1-2.

Records: Jersey Shore 8-1, 6-0 HAC-I.

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