Connie Mack team looks to get bats going
Throughout most of the season, consistent hitting was a key to Catasauqua’s success in the Lehigh Valley Connie Mack (LVCM) League.
In their last few games, however, the Roughies’ ringing bats have been toned down.
As a result, Catty dropped a 4-1 decision to Wilson and an 8-1 loss to South Parkland. They did edge Bethlehem Catholic, 4-3.
“South Parkland leads the league and they are a really good team,” said Roughies’ head coach Jim Kober. “We just didn’t hit and we’re having a slump at the plate.
“We were flat against Wilson and we also didn’t hit. But we have been working on our hitting during practice. A lot of our guys are at their 35th game of the year and they may be a little tired.
“With us being near the top of the standings, we tend to see the other’s teams top pitchers. We saw Wilson’s and South Parkland’s top guys. But we’re not getting timely hitting like we were at the start of the season.”
The Roughies will begin the week with an overall 9-5 record, placing them in a five-way tie for the fourth and final spot that vaults them into the state tournament. Catty has five games left and they don’t necessarily need to win all of them to get a guaranteed state berth.
“We are right there with five (games) to go,” said Kober. “Our goal all season has been to get to the state tournament by finishing as one of the top four teams. We also don’t have to win out. Our philosophy right now is to take one game at a time.
“We really have to worry about what we can do and not the other teams.”
As far as his team’s hitting woes, Kober will implore whatever is necessary.
“We want to try and put them in different situations,” he said. “We had them bunt and do some other things. There are a number of things you can try to help them make contact.
“But they know that they are still in this thing and they are not hanging their heads. They are excited to get to the field this week.”
Catty began the week by playing Stroudsburg Tuesday, then traveled to Jim Thorpe Thursday, and will end the week with a Saturday morning game against Moore Township.
They will finish the regular season with games against Northampton and Northeast Bethlehem, both teams who also are in the state tournament hunt.
Andrew Martinez, Jayden June, and Eli Fink will represent the Roughies in the Lehigh Valley All-Star Game July 8 in Limeport.
Kober evaluated the stretch in simple terms.
“It’s a five-game season,” he said. “These kids have exceeded expectations all year, and they will find a way.”