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Hendrickson dominance on mound proves too much for Taylor Kennedy

  • The Saline Hornets defeated Taylor Kennedy 3-0 June 7 for the Regional Championship. Photos by Mark McMullen.
On a day where Saline baseball was in full force, pitching seemed to mean the most for the Hornets as they took on the Taylor Kennedy Eagles in the final round of the regional 4 championship.

After a game where junior Josh Smith dominated the Lincoln Park Railsplitters through six innings, senior Michael Hendrickson wanted to make his mark as he went six hitless innings on the mound before the Eagles made it on base in the seventh to win, 3-0.

But, was Hendrickson trying to outperform his teammate on the mound?

“I’m not going to say I wasn’t,” he said with a smirk. “Josh is my best friend. I love him.

“It’s great to have Josh here. It’s been awesome having him. It’s great to push each other even in bullpens together, working out together in the weight room and phenomenal having him here. It’s been a blessing.”

Hendrickson finished the day with 10 strikeouts with one hit and three walks, but the most important one came at the end of the game.

After junior Cody Serafin hit a single, and barely made it on base, the Hendrickson got the next two batters out before junior Tim Kozar made it on base.

“It’s fine, we’re going to the quarterfinals,” Hendrickson said. “It doesn’t matter.”

Then the senior ended the game with junior Ray Richiard swinging on a full count.

“They did, they did,” Saline head coach Scott Theisen said. “No, (it didn’t feel like Kennedy could tie the game). Michael was in control, we were in no doubles depth and we weren’t going to let them hit it over our heads.”

The Hornets did all of their damage in the first inning when they had the bases loaded and singles by Hendrickson and junior Ryan Blake-Jones brought in three runs.

“Not necessarily, we knew he was a good pitcher,” Theisen said. “We’re not gonna put double-digit runs on that guy — he was good and they’re solid defensively.

“The three in the first was because Hendrickson just said ‘alright, I’m going to shut the door from here on out.’ And he did.”

It’s all the Hornets would need, as the Eagles couldn’t get on base for the majority of the game.

It’s not like Hendrickson would want to admit he didn’t think about the no-hitter, but as he said after the game, his teammates were talking about.

“… It’s fine. Jinx doesn’t matter; it’s baseball,” he said.

Last Updated: 6/9/2014 12:52:46 PM EST

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