BELLAIRE - So far, so good.
Midway through regular season play, Mike Collopy and his Edison Wildcats have yet to lose to an Ohio Valley opponent.
Naturally, that is of little concern to the 'Cats' sixth-year skipper who is looking no further ahead than his club's next opponent.
WITH?THE?DELIVERY — Edison pitcher Nolan?Marcus delivers a pitch during the Wildcats 4-1 win at Bellaire Friday.
"We've played reasonably well, but there's a lot of baseball left," Collopy confided following Edison's 4-1 Friday afternoon Buckeye 8 road win at Bellaire.
The 'Cats dropped a doubleheader at Alliance, but otherwise, have compiled 10 victories. Edison has done so via a combination of solid pitching, stout defense and timely offense.
Collopy's combine made the most of their five hits to prevail Friday against an improved Bellaire squad which dropped to 8-5.
John Patrone's Big Reds also collected five hits Friday but could muster no more than a single tally.
"We're just not quite (there) yet," Patrone advised. "We need to get to a point where we beat an opponent the caliber of Edison. Am I upset? Not at all. Our kids are out there competing hard. We're making progress."
Wildcats' sophomore Nolan Marcus was outstanding against the Big Reds, limiting the hosts to four singles and a double. Marcus, improving his mound mark to 2-1, recorded eight strikeouts and one walk. Additionally, his teammates played flawless defense behind him.
"That's the key," Collopy advised. "When we can execute our pitches like Nolan did today and make plays in the field, we can be a decent team."
Edison was a 1-0 leader in the first when veteran Greg Stagani singled home teammate Josh Pasek who had reached on a walk.
In the 'Cats' second, designated hitter Warren Rawlings induced a free pass and came on to score when leadoff man Chad Wickham singled.
Bellaire sophomore Wyatt Back led off the third with a single and eventually scored on a ground ball off the bat of catcher Nick Patrone.
The Reds threatened again in the fourth. Third baseman Dalton Conroy crushed a double to left and advanced on a wild pitch.
But Conroy was out at the plate when the Reds could not execute a squeeze bunt fielded by Marcus who put the tag on Conroy in front of the plate.
Edison came back to tack on two fifth inning insurance runs. Stagani again delivered a clutch run-scoring base knock and Pasek was safe at the plate when Edison executed a double steal.
Bellaire starter Spencer Badia worked two innings with senior Brady Hall coming on to finish. Hall fanned four and walked one.
Stagani's two hits and two RBIs paced the winners. Senior Phil Hilt hammered a double. Bellaire's Nick McMahon cracked two singles.
Both teams were scheduled to play Buckeye 8 doubleheaders today with Edison hosting Harrison Central at 12 noon and Bellaire playing a pair at Buckeye Local in a 11 a.m. start.
Edison 4, Bellaire 1
Edison 110 020 0 - 4 8 0
Bellaire 001 000 0 - 1 5 2
EDISON: Marcus (WP) and Glasure.
BELLAIRE: Badia (LP), Hall (3) and Patrone.