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Norwalk stays hot in SBC rout

By JOSH MORGRET • Apr 13, 2018 at 9:39 PM

SANDUSKY — It was hard to tell that Nolan Flowers was making his first varsity start on Friday.

The sophomore kept a calm demeanor and took a no-hitter into the fourth inning of Norwalk's 12-1 Sandusky Bay Conference Lake division win over Sandusky in five innings.

"Nolan did what we needed him to do," Norwalk coach Wes Douglas said. "He threw strikes and mixed in his off-speed pitches pretty well. We knew we would play pretty good defense behind him. He looked outstanding tonight."

Flowers allowed one run on two hits while walking three batters and striking out six for the Truckers (6-3, 3-1).

"Nolan was not overpowering, but he mixed his pitches well," Douglas said. "If he can pitch backwards a bit and throw his curve early in the count and then spot his fastball after that, he can get ahead of hitters and they do not sit dead red to a fastball."

Meanwhile, the Blue Streaks (0-9, 0-6) perhaps took a step back. After being no-hit on Monday by Clyde, Sandusky showed grit and fight in a 4-1 loss at Perkins on Wednesday.

Norwalk scored some of its runs off of mental mistakes and errors by the Blue Streaks. Quinn Hipp singled, stole second, and went to third on a throwing error. He then scored when a simple return of the ball from catcher Shonsai Brown to pitcher Gavin Craig was mishandled.

In the second inning, Nate Adelman singled and went all the way to third on a sacrifice bunt as nobody covered third on the play. The Truckers added two more runs to lead, 4-0, after two innings.

"Nate is going to be a special hitter and he is just a freshman," Douglas said. "He is hitting close to .600. He has a high baseball IQ and I don't want to jinx It, but I think he is going to be one of the best hitters to ever come through Norwalk High School."

The offense cranked up even more in the third inning. Garrett Obringer singled and stole second base. He came around to score when Leighton Battles smacked a double. Battles then scored when Adelman laced a double to centerfield.

Adelman moved up to third on a flyout to right field and tallied a run when Jacob Seitz, who had walked, broke for second for a stolen base as Adelman crossed home plate.

Hipp and Adelman added run-scoring singles on the fourth inning. Brandon Wise laced a two-run single in the fifth inning and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Battles.

Meanwhile, Flowers took care of the Blue Streaks at the plate. He recorded two strikeouts in each of the first two innings. He walked Sheyden Ahlers in the second inning, but picked Ahlers off at second base after Ahlers stole second.

Flowers walked Xzavier Santana in the third inning, but a fielder's choice ended that frame. Sandusky finally got a bit of offense in the fourth inning as Jermane Harris and Ahlers each singled. Brown then walked to load the bases and a wild pitch by Flowers scored Harris. However, Flowers again picked Ahlers off — this time at third base — to end the threat.

Grant Fulger struck out two batters as he pitched a 1-2-3 fifth inning to end the game. The Truckers have now won five games in a row and six of their last seven.

"Our pitching has been outstanding. Coach Wes Miller has all these guys pitching well," Douglas said. "They are trusting their defense and we have been aggressive on the bases. We have some small-ball down to put the pressure on the defense. You mix in some timely hits and that wins five games in a row."

Craig took the loss, allowing nine runs on nine hits and a walk.

Norwalk is scheduled to host Ashland in a doubleheader today if the rain holds off. The Truckers then have a big game Monday at Bellevue (8-1, 4-0).

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