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Aurora -- There were still a lot of positives even though the Aurora baseball team just went through a challenging portion of its non-league schedule.
That's just fine with Aurora skipper Tim Deering, who knows these type of games during the regular season will make his squad ready for the postseason.
On April 19, Aurora split a doubleheader at Uniontown Lake to put its overall mark at 8-4. There was a 10-5 loss to Lake and a 5-2 victory by the Greenmen.
Prior to the split at Lake (7-3), the Greenmen had another big road game which resulted in a 7-2 loss to perennial power Canton Central Catholic (9-2) on April 17.
Aurora also managed a 2-1 win April 16 at Youngstown Ursuline (4-5).
"The schedule is tough and we are improving," said Deering, who noted starting this week the team has 11 games scheduled in the next 12 days.
Lake used a huge 7-run second inning to defeat Aurora, which committed two errors. Senior pitcher Luke Calcei lost his first game of the year to move to 2-1.
Junior first baseman Josh Andexler had a pair of singles, a run scored and two runs batted in.
In the 5-2 win over Lake, freshman catcher Bubba Arslanian knocked in three runs with singles in the first and fifth innings, including a crucial bases loaded single to enable sophomore pitcher A.J. Kimes to move to 2-1 overall.
Kimes allowed two runs in six innings, striking out two and giving up eight hits. He allowed a run in each of the first two frames before tossing scoreless baseball.
"A.J. gave up a couple of runs and then settled down," said his coach. "He has a two-seam and four-seam curve, and a change-up. He is learning how to read hitters"
SENIOR KIRK Janoch and junior Matt Carpenter had singles and scored on Arslanian's single. The Greenmen also spread out three more singles to net three runs in the fifth.
"Arslanian moved up from the eighth spot to the six-hole and got a big hit for us," Deering said. "Senior Griff Petersen came in and got his second save of the season."
Central Catholic outhit Aurora 11-5 as sophomore Adam Long (2-1) was the losing pitcher for the locals. Freshman Ben Stawicki had a double and an RBI for Aurora.
"We went down there to Central Catholic and they showed us what a great program looks like," said Deering. "They have a heck of a program year in and year out."
Junior Carter Semancik won his first game on the mound as he had a complete-game 8-hitter against Ursuline at Bob Cene Park.
Semancik (1-0) did not walk a batter and allowed a run in the fourth inning. He gives the Greenmen plenty of depth on the mound along with Janoch, who is also 2-1.
"Carter did a good job and threw 71 pitches for us," said his mentor. "It's nice to have some pitching depth and he helped us, especially with the schedule we have coming up."
Aurora plated two runs in the first inning and that was enough. Petersen had a key RBI single and added another single. Junior Nick Ely had two singles and a run scored.
After a scheduled Chagrin Valley Conference series against Chagrin Falls earlier this week, AHS is slated to play April 24 at state power Mentor, will host Nordonia on April 25, and meets Massillon Jackson on April 27 at 3:30 p.m. at Kent State University.
The Greenmen, 1-1 in the CVC Chagrin Division heading into this week's action, are scheduled to play league games April 28-29 against West Geauga -- home and on the road, respectively.