BROOMFIELD —— What a difference a season makes.
Over the winter, Holy Family’s boys basketball team had more than a little trouble with Jefferson Academy. The Jags handed them their only two losses of the year.
It was something not lost on baseball team, whether they wanted to admit it or not.
“It’s more of a rival thing than anything,” said Holy Family pitcher Nick Kreutzer, who was integral part of the championship basketball run. “I didn’t think about basketball at all, it’s a totally different sport. What’s done is done and you can’t change the past.”
Kreutzer was dominant for the top-ranked Tigers on Tuesday, giving up just two hits and helping himself with a big three-run home run in a 15-0 mercy rule rout of the Jags at Kevin Ritz Field.
“It’s always nice to get a win, especially in the Metro League,” said Kreutzer, who team moved to 14-0 overall and 11-0 in the league.
The Tigers ended all doubt very quickly. Coach Eric Nakayama’s team sent 16 batters to he plate in the first inning, scoring 11 runs on just six hits. The Jags committed three errors and starting pitcher Dillon Lindholm was lifted after throwing 12 straight pitches out of the strike zone and retiring only one batter.
“You see everyone go down pretty quick,” said Jefferson Academy coach Ron Naylor, who team dropped to 3-8 overall and 2-6 in the Metro League. “I thought little by little we built up and started playing some baseball.
“We know we can play with them, but unfortunately our mental state right now is not something that equips them with that ability.”
In an odd turn of events, it was the middle umpire that signaled to Naylor for him to at least come check Lindholm out. Naylor simply took the ball from him and handed it to Damien Wise, who pitched admirably the rest of the way.
Kreutzer kept the Jags off-balance with a wonderful mix of speeds and had knees buckling with a few big sweeping breaking balls. In the first inning alone, he threw eight pitches, all for strikes, and didn’t give up a hit until the third inning. Casey Lindholm singled back up the middle, and two batters later Tyler Gray belted a double to the left-centerfield gap.
“I was more upset at myself that I left that ball hanging,” said Kreutzer, who had visions of a no-no.
The offense was crisp as usual for the Tigers, who stole six bases in the first inning alone. Zach Dedin went 3 for 4, with two runs scored and and RBI. Kreutzer was 2 for 2 with 4 RBIs, Austin Brown had two hits and Kennedy Phillips drove in two runs from his nine-hole spot in the order.
All of this on the eve of the Tigers biggest Saturday of the year, when they travel to Arvada to take on the AP media poll’s No. 3-ranked team in 3A, Faith Christian. Nakayama was proud of his team for not looking ahead and taking the Jaguars very seriously.
“We had a good day of practice yesterday and we were a little loose, but we talked about it and told them we have to take every opponent like the one that can beat you,” Nakayama said. “No matter if it’s Faith Christian or JA, or Manitou Springs, we take it one day at a time and just doing the things that we do well.
“We had a good approach today at the plate and obviously when Nick is throwing three pitches for strikes, we are having a good day on the mound as well. The kids are peaking at the right time and we are excited about what is ahead of us on Saturday, it’ll be a good challenge and our kids will be ready.”
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Holy Family 15, Jefferson Academy 0
At Holy Family H.S.
Jefferson Academy (3-8, 2-6) 000 00 — 0 2 3
Holy Family (14-0, 11-0) (11)04 0x — 15 12 0
W — Kreutzer (5-0). L — D. Lindholm (1-3).
Jefferson Academy hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Tyler Gray 2-0-1-0, Steven Kolberg 2-0-0-0, Zach Talley 2-0-0-0, Jake Barlow 2-0-0-0, Brendan Arellano 2-0-0-0, Dillon Lindholm 0-0-0-0, Taylor Teets 1-0-0-0, Dalton Cook 2-0-0-0, Casey Lindholm 2-0-1-0, Damien Wise 2-0-0-0, David Schlagel 0-0-0-0. Totals 17-0-2-0. 2B —Gray.
Holy Family hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Conor Stanley 4-0-1-0, Austin Brown 4-2-2-0, Devlin Granberg 2-2-0-0, Matt Lenzner 1-0-0-0, Zack Trombley 2-2-1-1, Alex Comeaux 1-1-0-0, Zach Dedin 4-2-3-1, Jacob Tinnon 2-2-1-1, Chris McManus 2-0-1-1, Joseph Coufal 0-2-0-0, Nick Kreutzer 2-2-2-4, Kennedy Phillips 2-1-1-2. Totals 26-15-12-10. HR — Kreutzer (two on in fourth). SB —Granberg 2, Trombley 2, Brown, Dedin.
Jefferson Academy pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — D. Lindholm .1-2-7-6-4-0, Wise 4.2-10-8-8-2-2.
Holy Family pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Kreutzer 5-2-0-0-1-4.