The first game of the season for the Greenon High School baseball team was a sign of things to come.
Knights junior pitcher Ryan Stockdale tossed a no-hitter in their 10-0 victory over Riverside. He was just one pitch away from a perfect game, said Knights coach Dan Young.
In the second game, sophomore Trent Green threw a two-hitter in an 11-1 victory over the Pirates.
“It felt good to get a winning track,” Young said. “That’s all they care about. They don’t focus on individual accomplishments. They just want to win.”
The Knights are off to a 7-2 start this season and currently lead the Ohio Heritage Conference South Division race at 5-1.
“We have a strong pitching staff,” Young said. “Most of the guys have started the last couple of years.”
The trio of Stockdale, Green and junior Zach Cornett have anchored the Knights pitching staff this season, Young said. Green is 2-0 this season with a 1.14 earned run average in 12.1 innings, while Cornett is 1-1 with a 1.56 ERA and Stockdale is 1-0 with a 1.85 ERA.
“They’re mixing speeds up,” Young said. “I think they’ve gotten stronger and they throw harder. They also haven’t walked guys.”
Cornett is leading the Knights with .533 batting, while Stockdale is hitting .474. Sophomore Bass Moore is hitting .429 with seven RBIs and four stolen bases. Seniors Nick Traylor (.375) and Nick Hundley (.375) are also coming up big early in the season.
Young, who previously coached at Fairborn and Springfield South before taking the Greenon job six years ago, isn’t sure if the Knights have ever won a league title in baseball.
“It’s our No. 1 goal,” Young said.
Last season, the Knights placed second in the OHC South, losing two one-run games to eventual champion Greeneview.
The Knights picked up several key wins so far this season, including a 7-6 victory over defending champion Greeneview and an 8-7 win over Triad. Greenon’s lone league loss came against an improved Cedarville squad 5-2 on April 5.
“I think they’re all much improved,” Young said. “We have to keep playing like we are, throwing strikes and having timely hitting and we’ll OK.”
Greenon has several big upcoming OHC crossover games against West Jefferson, Mechanicsburg and Northeastern.
Traylor and Hundley, the team’s lone seniors, have been great leaders for the Knights this season.
“They have great senior leadership and they’ve shown great commitment to the season,” Young said. “All the kids listen to them.”