Spartans get warm warm-up to start of season
April 4, 2018


Last weekend, Boardman's baseball team embarked on a Spring Break trip to Tampa to play in an annual spring tournament.

The bountiful sunshine that is predicted to shine in Florida this week will be a welcomed site for the Spartans. Due to inclement Ohio weather, Boardman's boys were only able to play one game so far this season. When the Spartans stepped off the bus down south, they were relieved knowing that a full slate of matches are in the offing.

"We are (in Tampa) and are excited to get started in some warm weather," said Boardman head coach Joe Gabriel last Saturday.

The Tampa tournament has fourteen teams seeded 1-14 and the games began this past Tuesday. The winners from the first round of contests went into the Championship bracket, while the other squads were sent to the Consolation bracket. The tournament runs through Friday, April 6 when a championship game will take place. Although the competition is stiff with many southern teams scheduled to play, the Spartans expect to stay strong throughout the tourney.

Gabriel's gang was certainly on top of their game when they hosted Howland in the season opener on March 26. Senior hurler Alex Cardona was in command of Howland's hitters all game giving up just two hits in a 12-0 Boardman whitewash.

"In was a nice win for the Boardman varsity," Gabriel mentioned.

If it weren't for Howland's Dylan Keller, Cardona would have gone all Bob Feller and spun an opening day no hitter. Keller collected both of the Tigers' singles. Meanwhile, Cardona recorded four strikeouts over his five-inning gem.

Offensively, senior Evan Knaus went 3 for 3 with two doubles and four RBI's to pace the Spartans. Coach Gabriel has Knaus penciled in the middle of his lineup and expects him to be a huge run producer all season. Junior Cam Kreps added a double for the Spartans with three ribbies and a couple of runs scored.

When the Spartans return home from their spring sojourn, they will jump right into All American Red Tier action against Warren Harding and Canfield. Both of those battles will be home-in-home series. The clash with the Cardinals will be extra important because the Canfield kids are the defending division champions and are expected to be the team to beat again this year. If Boardman wants to bounce Canfield from the top of the conference, it will need to be successful in this early season showdown.


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