<b>Rams Baseball Roughed Up Early</b>
After back-to-back poor outings by his pitching staff, Robinson head baseball coach Jeff Ferrell kept things positive and showed a sense of humor.
"We still expect to compete for a district title," Ferrell said on Saturday after the Rams were run-ruled by defending state champion West Springfield. "Right now, we’re expecting a starting pitcher to get to the second inning."
After defeating Annandale, 4-3, in the season opener on March 16, Robinson lost to Woodson, 9-2, on March 18 and West Springfield, 14-2, in five innings on March 19. Against West Springfield, The Rams’ starting pitcher walked the first three batters and allowed four earned runs. He was pulled after throwing a first-pitch ball to the fifth batter of the game, having not recorded an out.
While being outscored 23-4 by Woodson and West Springfield, last season’s Northern Region state playoff representatives, Ferrell said he used his entire pitching staff, other than ace Denis Mikush.
"We did have a chance to throw all our pitchers to find out who can do what," Ferrell said. "We didn’t throw our No. 1 these two days, but I think we’re still going to be pretty good with him on the mound."
Mikush is a right-hander who throws in the mid-80s with a quality curve ball, Ferrell said. Dan Cochrane and Connor Graber have emerged as the top candidates to fill the No. 2 and No. 3 starter roles.
Ferrell also said he expects designated hitter Alex Torres, second baseman Joe Priftis and outfielder Jared Velasquez to be key contributors
Robinson will host Kettle Run on March 26, at 12 p.m.
— Jon Roetman
<b>Robinson Boys Tennis Returns 3 Starters</b>
The Robinson boys tennis team begins the season with three returning starters. Senior Tim Ferrell moves into the top singles slot after playing No. 2 last season. Ferrell finished third in the district tournament last year. Also a senior, Michael Cable moves up from the No. 5 spot to play No. 2. The remaining returner, David Smiley, another senior, is starting for the third consecutive year at No. 4. Freshman Aaron Christian has moved up the ladder to take the No. 3 singles position. Senior Dillon Meyer is in the No. 5 position, followed by sophomore Jacob Schreiman. Junior Amit Gupta and sophomore Brian Bui are also close on the ladder and will both get their share of playing time.
At this time, the only set doubles team is Ferrell and Cable at No. 1. There are a number of players under consideration for the remaining doubles positions.
The team has already scrimmaged two of the regional powerhouses. The defending regional champion, Thomas Jefferson, has simply reloaded from last year and defeated the Rams, 7-2, although a number of matches were close. Dillon Meyer at No. 5 was the only singles winner. Robinson traveled to Patriot District champion and rival, Lake Braddock. Seniors Cable, Smiley, and Meyer won their singles matches. Christian and Gupta hung on for a tough win at No. 3 doubles. Although the Rams lost, 5-4, it was a good effort and sets the mark where the team wants to go this season.
Robinson’s home opener is on March 24, at 4 p.m., against Oakton.
— Robinson head coach Paul Fisher