Lambert lost three of its first five region games this season while struggling to solidify its pitching rotation. But after falling 8-1 to Northwest Whitfield on March 24, the Longhorns haven’t looked back.
Right-hander Joe Vonderschmidt pitched a complete game on Monday, giving up six hits and two walks while striking out five in an 8-1 Longhorns victory over Sequoyah at Lambert High School.
The victory was the fifth straight for the Longhorns (11-5, 7-3 Region 7-AAAA), who have allowed a total of eight runs during that stretch.
“This is his second great outing in a row,” Longhorns coach Jamie Corr said of Vonderschmidt.
“He is really going to be vital to our success down the stretch.”
Vonderschmidt was backed by a Lambert offense that gave him all the support he would need in the third inning, exploding for five runs.
Seqouyah (0-16, 0-11) remains winless this season and has scored three runs or less in nine of their last 11 games.
Chiefs starting pitcher Tristan Roberts (2.2 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 4 BB) started the bottom of third by walking Trey Logan, who stole second on the next pitch.
Tanner Scroggins also reached first with a walk, and both runners advanced a base on a sacrifice bunt from Jake Lucas (2-for-4, R).
After Brock Maxwell walked to load the bases, Justin Reichling (2-for-3, 3 RBI, R) lined a three-run double over the shortstop and into left-center field.
Reichling advanced to third on a groundout and — after Brian Watson drew a walk — scored on a wild pitch.
Roberts failed to cover the plate on the wild pitch and was immediately pulled from the game.
Reliever Preston Barnes inherited a 3-1 count on Eric Furphy.
The freshman lined Barnes’ first pitch into right field to score Watson, who had advanced to second on Roberts’ wild pitch. Eight batters came to the plate for Lambert in the inning.
“Our guys do a good job of feeding off each other,” Corr said. “We made good adjustments in the middle innings, and put the barrel on the ball.”
Danny Edgeworth added a solo home run in the fifth, and Brock Maxwell put the exclamation point on the victory in the sixth with a two-run homer that followed a double by Lucas.
Vonderschmidt struggled to close out the game, giving up three straight hits, but ended the threat after surrendering his only run of the game.
“I lost my focus there a little bit, but I was able to gain it back,” Vonderschmidt said. “The defense really helped me out.”
Lambert is now in fourth place in Region 7-AAAA.
Corr said that the key for his team to continue climbing up the standings is doing the simple things.
“We’ve just got to focus on the fundamentals, and continue our great situational hitting,” he said.
The Horns travel to Cass on Friday (6 p.m.).