Calvary Christian makes Berkeley Prep pay for early mistakes

Calvary Christian freshman Tommy White (No. 44) is greeted at home plate by Cavan Ingram after smacking a two-run home run off the scoreboard in right field in the third inning. It was White's second home run in as many games. 

By Jarrett Guthrie
TAMPA – Good teams take advantage of extra chances, and calling Calvary Christian just a “good” team is a gross understatement. The Warriors took full advantage of three costly Berkeley Prep errors in the first three innings to get a sizeable lead and held on for a 5-2, district win.

Calvary Christian (22-0, 10-0 in Class 4A-District 4) junior Christian Cairo walked with one out in the first, stole second and moved to third on an error, before being driven in on a Justin Bench sac bunt to start the scoring. Freshman Tommy White led off the next inning with a single and after a pair of outs and a walk, the Warriors again caught a break as another throwing error allowed two runs to cross.

Tommy White takes a good lead off of third base in front of Calvary Christian head coach Greg Olsen in the second inning. White would score on an error two pitches later. 


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White, who had the game-winning double in last Friday’s extra-inning win at Carrollwood Day, and belted his first home run of his high school career in a 1-0 win over Venice on Tuesday, found himself in the box as another throwing error allowed the top of the third to continue. White crushed the second pitch of the at-bat to right field and the ball clanged off the scoreboard for a two-run homer.

"You always have to take advantage of those extra opportunities," White said. "If they give us a passed ball, we're going to steal, whatever they give us we are going to run with it at 100%."

The miscues by the Buccaneers’ defense spoiled a solid start on the mound by sophomore right-hander Garrett Boeckle, who took the hard-luck loss, allowing five unearned runs over five innings of work, giving up just two hits, walking four and striking out four.

Berkeley Prep sophomore Garrett Boeckle was tagged with a tough loss, working five innings allowing five runs - all unearned - on just two hits and striking out four.

Matching up on the mound for the Warriors was junior righty Braden Halladay, who earned the win, tossing a complete-game, allowing two runs on four hits, and striking out eight.  Halladay said his offense put him at ease early and he was able to focus on just throwing strikes and on getting outs.

"As a pitcher it's comforting, because a good pitcher's mentality is to just giving your team the best chance to win," Halladay said. "So when they get you those early runs, there isn't the pressure that you have to go out and throw a shutout, you can just do your part knowing they have already done theirs."

Berkeley Prep senior Carson Weekley rounds third and comes
home after crushing a solo home run to the deepest
part of the field in the third innings. 
Berkeley Prep (14-8, 6-3 in 4A-4) did chip away at the Calvary Christian lead in exciting fashion, as senior Carson Weekley blasted an 0-2 fastball over the centerfield wall in the third, and fellow senior Julian Bosnic deposited a pitch at his knees over the right field fence in the fourth. But from there the Buccaneers only managed a seventh-inning Ryan Leavy (2-for-3) single on offense against Halladay. The Penn State verbal commit steadily pounded the zone, walking just one hitter, and striking out six of the final 12 batters he faced, as Halladay improves to 7-0 on the mound this season.

Calvary Christian junior Braden Halladay earned the win with a complete-game effort, allowing two runs, on four hits and striking out eight to move to 7-0 on the season. 
"I feel like everybody gets a little PO'd when they give up two solo home runs," Halladay said. "Both (pitches) were kind of mistakes and good hitters take advantage of mistakes, but things like that help to zero you in."

The win makes it 52-in-a-row for the defending Class 4A state champions, Calvary Christian, which on were named No. 1 in the nation in USA Today’s Super 25 on Wednesday.

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