April 20, 2015

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

CARBONDALE – He may not have been on a “mission from God,” but “Joliet” Jake Herron certainly pitched like he was Monday as the John A. Logan College sophomore led the Volunteers to a 10-1 non-conference victory at Itchy Jones Stadium on the SIUC campus.

Herron allowed only one run on three hits in eight innings of work, improving his spring record to 3-1 and lowering his earned-run-average below 2.50. The righthander struck out seven, walked one, and hit one batter.

“I felt pretty good today. I had all three pitches (fastball, curve and change up) working for me,” Herron said. “It helped that we got a lead early and the defense played well. It was just a good team win.”

Herron said it has taken time to work through a torn labrum injury from last year.

“My arm’s just now starting to feel good again,” he said. “After the Shawnee game, I decided I was going to trust myself more. My curve is definitely my best pitch right now. It’s bailed me out a time or two.”

Vols head coach Jerry Halstead was impressed.

“That’s kind of what we were thinking we could get out of Jake when he’s healthy,” Halstead said. “It’s been a struggle for him, but today, he was spot on. He had all three pitches working for him with great location and great command. He’s a very heady pitcher. His velocity is not yet where it was before the surgery, but he showed what you can do with great location. He was Greg Maddux-like today – up, down, in, and out with great off-speed stuff.”

Logan took a 1-0 lead in the first when Nate Tholl singled, advanced to third on a single by Culver Plant, and scored on a groundout off the bat of Jeff Hahs.

The Vols made it 2-0 in the third. Kyle Schneider led off with an infield single. He stole second, went to third on a wild pitch, and scored on an RBI single by Hahs.

Logan blew the game wide open in the fifth with seven runs. Doug Parks led off with a double. One out later, Tholl singled. A fielder’s choice grounder from Plant scored Parks. Hahs doubled Plant home, his third RBI of the game. Tyler Horchem walked. Tyler Robertson walked. Austin Rieman followed with a two-run single. An error by the centerfielder allowed two more runs to score. Parks then drove in a run with a ground-rule double, his second two-bagger of the inning.

Logan tacked on one final run in the sixth when Robertson singled home Plant.

The Vols improve to 19-14 overall and will play host to Southeastern Illinois Thursday at 2 p.m.

 

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Dr. Steve O’Keefe at 618-985-2828 ext. 8569 or email at steveokeefe@jalc.edu.