WARRENSBURG-With several key victories now in their 2011 score book, the Warrensburg High School baseball team has a surprisingly solid start to their season.
In recent years, they've struggled initially and racked up wins later.
Not this year - they've started out 3-1 in the Adirondack League.
"At the beginning of the season, I wasn't sure what we had going," Burgher Coach Rex Reynolds said Tuesday night. "But now it seems we have this explosive offense we can tap into."
Monday against perennial powerhouse Corinth, the first five batters in the lineup stepped up to the plate and demonstrated this ability. Within minutes, after a flurry of hits, all five scored runs against their storied opponents.
"Right now, the kids are showing their natural talent and desire to win," Reynolds added. "And they're buying what I'm selling - they're very coachable."
One of those hits Monday was a triple by Aaron Seeley, a missile which bounced only twice to strike the left field fence. It was the first of two triples for Seeley in the game.
Then in the fourth inning, the Burghers hit another 5 runs. They finished off with a few runs in the 5th, 6th and 7th innings. Lucas Nelson hit a triple, and Austin DeMarsh hit a two-bagger. Jacob Siletti struck out six in the 17-1 win.
Friday's victory at home against Whitehall may have fueled the big win Monday on the Corinth field.
Against the Railroaders, Warrensburg staged a memorable come-from behind victory that thrilled their fans.
The Burghers were down 5-1 in the 5th inning, with the one run a solo homer by Lucas Nelson.
With the game on the line, Reynolds called a quick team meeting, and urged them to step up their offense and give support to their pitchers.
The Burghers did just that, ripping off another flurry of hits. Whitehall rebounded to have the edge at 5-4, and there were two outs in the 6th inning. Mike Curtis was ready to go to the plate, and Reynolds challenged him.
"Put this team on your back and carry us," he advised, borrowing a quote from The Natural "I really need you to do it."
On the first pitch, Curtis slammed a three-run homer. Rounding the bases, he had a broad grin on his face.
The score was now 7-4 favoring the Burghers, who never looked back.
Pitcher John Joseph pitched a complete game, tallying 14 strikeouts, Reynolds recalled. Joseph and Nelson both were 3 for 4 at bat in the 9-5 turnaround victory.
"Joseph really shut down some serious hitters," the coach said.
With the crushing homer and some impressive statistics as catcher, Mike Curtis was named Player of the Week by Warrensburg Car Care.
Two days earlier the Burghers played Bolton.
In this showdown, Warrensburg set a new school record, hitting 8 doubles. Half of them were shots in the gap, the other were over the fence in Bolton's cramped left field.
The Warrensburg athletes showed their explosive offense with no less than 9 runs in the first inning, scoring in each stanza of the game but two.
The game ended up 24-5, a testimony to the Burgher players' long hours this season in the weight room.
Their offense against Bolton was matched by savvy pitching. Starter Tyler Williams tallied 10 strike outs, and he was relieved by Justin Baird, who had five in two innings.
"It was a good win," Reynolds said. "We're gelling as a team. The players work hard," he said, noting they spend extra time in practice.
"They're a great bunch," he added. "Our goal is to be competitive every night no matter who's on the mound or who we're facing. Our kids know every night could be a dogfight, but they always have a solid opportunity to win."