Special to the Recorder
Ponte Vedra High School (PVHS) won all of their baseball games last week with the highlight being a school-record-shattering performance from senior pitcher Tony Roca.
The North Florida commit struck out 19 Menendez hitters in the Sharks’ 7-1 victory over the Falcons on Thursday, March 28. So dominant was the “fireballing” southpaw that only four Falcons batters were able to put a ball in play in the seven-inning affair.
Menendez leadoff hitter John Ford led off the game with a base hit, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored the only Falcons run on a ground out to first base. Roca then fanned 19 of the next 21 to smash the former record of 12 strikeouts in a game shared by former Shark pitchers Matt Deegan (2013) and Jackson Johnson (2014).
Roca has now punched out 133 batsmen in his three-year career for the Sharks and now trails only Deegan (179) in Shark annals.
Menendez hurler Jonathon Crist kept the Falcons in the game before the Sharks were able to salt the contest away by scoring six runs in the sixth inning.
The victory was one of three wins for the Sharks in a very productive week as they pushed their season’s record to an impressive nine wins against but three defeats.
Earlier in the week, the Sharks held off St. Augustine 7-6 on March 26. Alex Ortiz came on in relief to get the save as the visiting Yellow Jackets scored five runs in the top of the seventh before Ortiz retired the final two batters to preserve the win. Roca was the hitting star in this game with a home run and a double.
There was no such drama in the final game of the two-game series with Menendez as the Sharks cruised to a convincing 13-2 win over the Falcons on Friday, March 29. Brody Maynard hurled four scoreless innings for the Sharks to earn the win while his catcher Mason McLeod led the Ponte Vedra hitting attack with three hits.