Terrapins stay hot with 8-3 win over Lancers

Tampa Prep senior Will Jennewein beats the throw to the plate, scoring on a two-run double by Ignacio Gonzalez. 

By Jarrett Guthrie, Editor

TAMPA – If hitting is contagious, Tampa Prep needs to be quarantined. The Terrapins’ hitters have been squaring balls up all over the place, averaging more than six runs-per-game, as Tampa Prep has won seven-of-eight since dropping two of the first three games.

The hitting and damage to the scoreboard continued on Tuesday as the Terrapins put up nine hits – four of them for extra bases – and defeated visiting Cambridge Christian, 8-3.

“We just want to make something happen every at bat,” Terrapins senior Ignacio Gonzalez said. “We just want to score runs, it doesn’t matter how we do it – bunt, sac fly, doubles, home runs – it doesn’t matter. We are just going to go out and do whatever it takes to win.”

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The Terrapins spotted Cambridge two runs in the top of the first as Torey Thomas led off the game with a double, scored on a Brody Bellomo single, who in-turn scored on a Brent Farris single.

Cambridge Christian’s Brody Bellomo singled in the game’s first run, and added this hit in the third inning.

From there Gonzalez and fellow senior Will Jennewein would provide a major spark to the Tampa Prep (8-3) offense. Jennewein followed up Kyle Brill’s leadoff single in the home-first with a double to center to put two in scoring position, and Gonzalez went the opposite way to tie the game.

“Trailing 2-0, I just wanted to make something happen, put something on the board,” Gonzalez said. “I kept it simple, going the other way and from there we just kept hitting.”

Senior Ignacio Gonzalez goes opposite field with a two-run double in the first.

Jennewein said after the game, responding to the Lancers first-inning runs was crucial to the victory.

“They (Cambridge Christian) swung it well,” Jennewein said. “So, we had to answer, had to come back and put up a couple runs. And that was huge for this team, it brought out some great energy early, and as the game went on we kept getting our runs however we could.”

The Terrapins would take the lead a few batters later when Jordan Della Rocca (two RBI) hit a sacrifice to left to score Gonzalez.

Jordan Della Rocca gives Tampa Prep the lead with this RBI sac fly.

Junior Koy Fogg has been a huge factor for the Terrapins this season, appearing in eight games out of the bullpen. His ninth outing on Tuesday was not only his best, but also the longest of his high school career, as the righty gave his team four strong innings, allowing just one run on three hits, while striking out three.

“Koy threw unbelievably all night,” Jennewein said, “and he’s been doing that all year out of the bullpen.”

Terrapins reliever Koy Fogg made his ninth appearance on the mound this season, and earned the win with four strong innings.

Fogg gave up a walk in his first inning of relief, and scattered two hits before finally finding some trouble in the sixth when Bellomo (2-for-3) walked, and Blake Hafner (2-for-3) singled to force the Terrapins to make a change. Braiden Price would send a sac fly to center to get in one more Lancers run, but that was all the damage allowed as Della Rocca worked out of trouble in the sixth and Lincoln Bailey closed things out.

“It’s all about throwing strikes for me,” Fogg said. “My shortstop Iggy (Gonzalez) is telling me, ‘just throw it over the plate, we’ll back you up.’

“And they have been a great defense all year, so that was a major factor. Centerfielder, Jennewein – great, and everyone made all the plays behind me tonight.”

Terrapins catcher Jack Angelone tags Torey Thomas after a dropped third strike.

After starting the season with an extra-inning win against Berkeley Prep, Tampa Prep struggled in losses to Lakeland Christian and Tampa Catholic. But Fogg said the early defeats could have snowballed for he and his teammates, but instead they’ve used it to motivate themselves. And the current stretch has them asking one question.

“Our slogan is, ‘Why not us?’” he said. “We started the year with the big win against Berkeley Prep, and then we lose back-to-back games, and we were really on our back foot.

“But then we went out, won some tough games, and it just built. So, yeah, Why not us?”

Liam Akins brought in a run with a single to center.

Liam Akins singled in a run to center in the third, and would score on a delayed, double steal with Della Rocca scrambling away from the second baseman long enough for Akins to cross; Jennewein would single in a run in the next inning, and Della Rocca would help another run across with a bases-loaded walk.

Cambridge Christian 2B Trigg Listerman runs down Della Rocca, but not before he was able to give Liam Akins the chance to score from third.

Sophomore Zachary Uhl would get Cambridge Christian (4-6) out of trouble with a pop out to Bellomo, and struck out a pair in his 1-2-3 inning in the fifth.

Zachary Uhl got the Lancers out of a jam in the fourth, and pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the fifth.

The game would be put well out of reach in the sixth when Jennewein would collect his third hit in a big way, smacking his second home run of the season over the net in right field.

“My approach was to hit something hard back up the middle of the field,” Jennewein said. “Try to keep getting runs, keep building that insurance.”

Cambridge Christian CF Robert Moore runs down a pop fly in the outfield.

Tampa Prep welcomes Glen St. Mary Baker County for a visit on Thursday, and visits Mount Dora Academy on Saturday; while the Lancers host Sarasota Christian at Skyway Park on Thursday, and travels to Hernando Christian on Friday.

Ignacio Gonzalez (right) congratulates fellow senior Will Jennewein at the plate after his solo home run in the sixth.

Tampa Prep 8, Cambridge Christian 3

C 200|001|0 – |3|6|1
T 302|201|x – |8|9|2
W – Fogg (2-0); L – Snider
2B – Thomas (C); Gonzalez 2, Jennewein (T); HR – Jennewein (T). Records – C (4-6); T (8-3).