To say Sunnyside Christian High School pitcher Chad Den Boer was in a groove this past Saturday might be a bit of an understatement.
The Knight sophomore (4-1) pitched his best game of the season in the opening contest of a doubleheader against Lyle this past Saturday. In five innings of work, Den Boer struck out six Cougar batters, allowed just one hit and gave up only one walk, as the Knights went on to win 10-0.
By the way, Den Boer proved he could hit the ball too, as he ended up only one hit shy of going for the cycle in the opening game. Den Boer was 3-for-4 with a double, a triple and a two-run home run.
The nightcap didn't go too badly for the Knights either. Sunnyside Christian beat Lyle 23-13 for the sweep.
"He was hitting his spots," said Sunnyside Christian Coach Kevin Fennell of Den Boer. "He didn't make any errors."
Fennell said Den Boer was throwing effective heat with the fastball and mixing up his pitches with a curve every once in a while. Fennell said he still expects that Den Boer's best game of the season is ahead of him. Fennell will be working with Den Boer on implementing another pitch in his arsenal.
The Knights scored the first of their runs with a five-run third. Sunnyside Christian added three more runs in the fourth. Den Boer scored Lucas Kilian with his two-run home run. Kilian had an double in his at-bat to plate John Bosma. In the fifth inning, the Knights scored a pair of runs on a double from Den Boer.
The Knights had 11 hits in the first game. Kilian had another outstanding hitting game for the Knights, going 3-for-4 at the plate. Bosma was 2-for-3.
Despite committing five errors in the second game, the Knights still had few problems with Lyle, winning 23-13.
Eight of the 13 runs Lyle scored were earned in the nightcap.
Lyle had three errors in the second game, but that didn't play in as much of a factor. Twenty of the 23 runs Sunnyside Christian scored were earned.
The Cougars plated four runs in the first and nine in the error-marred third inning.
The Knights had three in the first inning and exploded for eight runs in the second inning. Sunnyside Christian added seven runs in the third and finished with a five-run sixth inning. Justin Bos had a two-run single in the sixth for Sunnyside Christian.
Fennell said a number of the problems for the Knights in the top of the third when Lyle scored nine runs can be traced back to the bottom of the second inning. Fennell said Sunnyside Christian pitcher Cole Van de Graaf was having a solid game, but Van de Graaf's arm cooled off when the Knights scored eight runs in the bottom of the second. Fennell felt the long second inning didn't help Van de Graaf when he took the mound in the third inning.
"Except for that one inning, we had a pretty good game," said Fennell.
The Knights (4-0, 6-1) will host Zillah's JV squad this Tuesday.