The DeSales High School baseball team had a five-game winning streak snapped with a 3-1 loss to Jonathan Alder on April 19.

The DeSales High School baseball team had a five-game winning streak snapped with a 3-1 loss to Jonathan Alder on April 19.

That might not be good news for the rest of the CCL and potential Division II district tournament opponents, however. The Stallions also lost to Jonathan Alder during the regular season last year before beating the Pioneers 4-2 in a state semifinal en route to winning their first state championship since 1979.

"Jonathan Alder is one of the best teams in central Ohio and we had three league games in a one-week span," said coach Tom Neubert, whose team was 14-4 overall and 4-0 in the CCL before playing Watterson on April 23. "Winning the CCL is our primary goal every season and Jonathan Alder doesn't play league games.

"We faced their top pitcher and he kept us off balance. He had nice velocity and threw his off-speed stuff for strikes. We made some errors early that led to a few runs and we never really got our bats going."

The Stallions bounced back the next day as Nick Eltzroth threw a one-hitter in a 5-0 CCL victory over St. Charles.

"Eltzroth was absolutely outstanding," Neubert said. "He threw three pitches for strikes and we played good defense. Nick works quick and throws a lot of strikes."

The Stallions outscored their first four league opponents 33-5, including a 10-0, five-inning win over Hartley on April 16 in which T.J. Alas threw a no-hitter.

"We've got to rely on pitching and defense, and I'm fortunate that 11 or 12 of the 17 guys on the roster can pitch," Neubert said. "We don't have a true rotation. It just depends on the game, the situation, who will throw. We definitely have our four or five top guys, but we have a plethora of pitchers who I can call on at any time to go out throw strikes and compete."

DeSales needed some time to adjust to being the reigning state champion, but it seemed to get on track on a spring break trip to Hilton Head, S.C.

"Although we have the same guys in the dugout from last season, this is a different team," Neubert said. "Kids grow, mature and change personalities and attitudes. They put a lot of pressure on themselves. When we lost our first game down there (9-4 to Hilton Head on April 9), we had to sit down and talk about things.

"They had to understand that this is the 2012 DeSales baseball team, not the 2011 DeSales baseball team. They can't take the field for every game as the state champion. They need to take the field as the 2012 team that wants to be successful. They have to have fun playing the game and stop trying too hard. They need to let things happen, not try to force things to happen. I will say that right now I am very comfortable with the way they have responded and the way we are playing."

The Stallions were hitting .360 as a team through 18 games. Alas, who bats third, was hitting .460 with 27 RBI and cleanup hitter Zak DeCamp was hitting .420 with three home runs and 27 RBI. Leadoff batter Chris Kurek was hitting .415 and Eltzroth and Jack Miller had 17 and 14 RBI, respectively.

The pitching staff had a 2.30 ERA through 18 games, with Eltzroth, Alas, Miller, Brennan Schlabig and Bryan Stopar leading the way.

Boys lacrosse coach seeks complete game

Even though his team improved to 6-0 by beating Toledo St. Francis 16-1 on April 21, boys lacrosse coach Matt Triplet thinks the Stallions have a lot of work ahead if they plan to meet their goals.

"We haven't put four good quarters of offense and defense together yet," he said. "Before the season, the kids told me their goals and one of them was to potentially play for (the Division II state championship). I told them they would have to buy into the system every day, practice and game.

"When they don't do that, it's up to me to hold them accountable. Well, we aren't where we need to be. Then again, we haven't played with all of our personnel yet. Although we've had guys step in and do a great job filling holes, we're close to getting three key players back, but I'm not going to name names."

Junior attacker J.T. Blubaugh had six goals against St. Francis three days after scoring six in an 11-4 win over Granville. Senior midfielder Mark Dietz had five goals against St. Francis and senior goalkeeper Tyler McClary had eight saves. Senior midfielder Anthony Ciammaichella had four goals against Granville.

Triplet said he's been happy with the grunt work of seniors Tim Doone, Patrick McGuire and Ross Wanner.

"Doone is just very consistent and McGuire has been very strong at long-stick midfielder," Triplet said. "Wanner is our faceoff guy and he's having a great season. Those guys don't get their names announced often, but they do a great job doing that dirty work for us."