Team Ontario College prep with a Pair of Victories to Kick-off Spring Training

by Nick Prasad

The Team Ontario Astros took flight to the sunny town of Winter Haven, Florida for their annual March Spring Training trip. Day two in Winter Haven brought the first on-field games the club has seen in months, and they did not disappoint one bit.

Team Ontario College Prep Orange vs Siena Heights 

The College Prep Orange Roster (17U/18U), lead by Jason Booth, Shawn Lynn, and Nick Prasad, took action against two tough collegiate programs in a Thursday double-header. Game one posed battle against Siena Heights, a well-known university out of Michigan, USA, with an established baseball program.  Team Ontario took the field, with right-hander Aidan Gelhard on the bump.

Siena Heights broke the offensive ice early, scoring a run in the top of the first; one of the only two runs they cashed in this game. Ontario bounced back offensively in the bottom of the 3rd, cashing three runs and taking the lead. Chris Tassopoulos ripped a first pitch double to score a run, followed by a ground-out RBI by Will Timpano.

The offense was stellar and well executed. Some offensive notables are Ryan Nuernberger, who went 2 for 3 with a run scored, Chris Tassopoulos, 1 for 2, 1 RBI, 1 run scored and a walk, Will Timpano, 1 for 3 with an RBI, Tristan DesRochers, 1 for 3 with a hit and a run scored.

The pitching was stellar, with a three-arm combined outing, lead by a solid start by Gelhard. Gelhard went 3 innings of work, only allowing 2 hits, 1 earned run, 1 walk, striking out 5. His stuff was on-point, with a consistent delivery, commanded the fastball well, working the zone, while flashing his off-speed, which clearly was effective. Gelhard sat between 84-86mph, maxing 87 on the fastball. On the other side of this performance was a well called game by catcher Bradley Stoner.

In relief, Aidan Chouinard threw 2 innings, striking out 1, giving up only 1 run on 2 hits. Will Timpano saw some mound time, closing it out, with 2 innings of work, 2 strikeouts, 1 walk, no runs, and no hits allowed, for a Team O victory, 4-2 over Siena Heights.

Team Ontario College Prep Orange vs Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) 

Game 2 of the double header was a face off against WPI, a school out of Massachusetts. Team Ontario hit the gas pedal on this one, scoring 11 runs, with an 11-1 victory over WPI. Let’s start with pitching; Caleb Wurzer! Wurzer started and battled all game, only giving up 2 hits, over 4 innings of shutout baseball, seating 7 WPI hitters. The southpaw was in full control, attacking the zone and executing his off-speed in full effectiveness.

Parallel to starting pitching, the bats were on fire. Team O hitters squared off against WPI’s southpaw starter, putting up an 11 spot. Highlights included Will Timpano and Asafa Jones with a pair of bigflies to get the offense rolling. Jones went 2 for 2 with 3 runs, 3 RBI’s, 2 hits, and a walk. Timpano went 1 for 2 with 2 runs and 2 RBI’s. Some other notables are Nuernberger, 2 for 3 with 2 runs, 2 hits, Tassopoulos, 1 for 2, 2 runs, 1 hit, 1 RBI, and a walk, DesRochers, 2 for 3, 1 run, 2 RBI’s, Finn Walker, 1 for 3 with 1 hit, 1 run, and an RBI, Jake McAllister, 2 for 3 with an RBI, and Chase Mulligan, 1 for 1, with 1 hit, 1 RBI and a walk.