By Mal Boright
A southern invasion awaits the top-seeded Champlain Valley Union High baseball team Friday, when the Burr and Burton Academy Bulldogs bus into Hinesburg to tangle with coach Tim Albertson’s 16-1 Redhawks in a Division 1 quarterfinal (4 p.m.).
The Manchester-based unit brings an 11-6 record to Friday’s fray, having zipped ninth-seeded Essex High 4-0 in Tuesday’s opening round at its dog pound.
Albertson said Tuesday that he did not know much about Burr and Burton, but would be getting on the phone.
This was after the Redhawks put away 16 seed Missisquoi Valley Union 12-1 in an opening round test at the CVU ball yard.
“It was another good team effort,” said Albertson, as he reflected on a five-hit pitching performance from Will Potter (four innings) and Andrew Bortnick (three frames) plus 12 hits from the batting order.
“They (Potter, Bortnick) had really good pitches today,” said catcher Dan Poodiack.
The outcome was no longer an issue after the bottom of the first inning, in which the Redhawks pushed over five runs on a pair of hits, three walks, a hit batter plus two Thunderbird throwing errors, a wild pitch and passed ball.
Potter—the starting pitcher with a toxic mix of fastball, curve, slider and change—allowed the visitors only a pair of hits (one an infield dribbler) while whiffing six and walking but one. Bortnick finished up and limited MVU to three hits and its lone tally, which came with two out in the seventh. He fanned two.
The noisiest rap men were Rayne Supple with three singles and three runs batted in, and Potter, who reached base four times on two singles, a walk, plus getting hit by a pitch. Poodiack singled and scored twice.
Leadoff batter Deagan Poland reached base four times with a double, two walks and getting plunked by a pitch. He also scored twice. The other member of the extra base boom brigade was designated hitter Landon Carpenter, who slugged a two-bagger and walked in three appearances.
Rayne Supple was the winning hurler last Thursday as the Redhawks tripped visiting (6-10) North Country Union 6-1 in the regular season finale. The state’s Gatorade player of the Year for a second straight season worked five innings, allowing five hits and the run while striking out nine. Bortnick relieved with two hitless innings.
Jack Dugan’s RBI single in the fourth gave CVU a 2-1 lead, its first advantage in the game. Potter smacked a pair of singles, as did Carpenter, while Tanner Smith stroked a pinch two-RBI single in the fifth, his second key pinch blast in two games.