Brandon Nostrant

Review of Rockford baseball’s 2011 championship season

June 30, 2011 // 0 Comments

The Rams didn’t have anyone get drafted in the MLB draft this year. It’s not that they didn’t have talent—they certainly did. But they didn’t rely on the pitcher who throws 90+ or the hitter who hit 20 homeruns. What they did have was a never-give-up attitude, a mantra of GBED (Get Better Every Day) and inspiration in the form of an 11-year-old boy. Coach’s son, Ian Hearn Jr., had to have two heart surgeries as the Rams prepared to go into the playoffs. It was a source of inspiration as they resolved to win for Ian Junior. And win they did. The Rams worked their way through the districts, regionals, quarterfinals and semifinals until they got to the title game and won the state championship—a first for Rockford baseball. Thankfully, the surgeries for Ian Junior were successful as well. There wasn’t any one player who carried the team on their back. It was a total team effort from day one. The Rams had adversity and distractions along the way, but worked through them like a true family. The guidance and instruction from the coaching staff allowed the team to stay focused and on track to accomplish what had not previously been done at Rockford. In a school the size of Rockford, playing in the tough OK Red conference, it’s hard to believe there would be freshmen mature and talented enough to be part of a state championship-caliber varsity team. Kory Young is one such player. Young could have stayed at the junior varsity level and received more playing time, but chose to stay at varsity and gain valuable experience that will certainly serve him well in the years to come. He batted .333 and was a great utility player when the Rams needed him. He will certainly be one of the bright spots in the future for Ram baseball. Two other freshmen were pulled up for the playoffs: Reid Kelley and Brent Showers. Kelley is a fireballing right-handed pitcher and will likely be a big part of future Ram success. He gained some valuable experience and will no doubt be looked to as a team leader in the years to come. Showers’ situation was a bit different. Tony DiLeo, the junior everyday catcher, was […]

Rockford defeats Jenison to claim at least co-champion of OK Red

June 2, 2011 // 0 Comments

The Rams traveled to Jenison on Monday, May 23, for the first of their last two conference games in OK Red action, and defeated the Wildcats 8-3. Rockford scored early as Drew Farmer walked to lead off the game and then advanced to third base on an errant pick-off move and scored on a passed ball. The Rams scored one in the second inning as well, when Christian Leinesch drew a walk, Ian Stankus and Max Crimp singled, and Andrew Rademacher hit a sacrifice fly to plate Leinesch. Rockford then scored four more runs in the third inning as Brandon Nostrant led off with a single and stole second. Tony DiLeo walked, Leinesch reached on an error, Matt Boonstra singled and Stankus doubled to the fence in left-center. In the fourth, the Rams plated two more runs when Farmer led off with a single, Nostrant walked, Shain Showers sacrifice bunted and DiLeo singled. Rockford was held scoreless in the fifth, sixth and seventh. Offensive contributors were Farmer (1-3), Nostrant (1-2, SB), DiLeo (1-3, RBI), Boonstra (1-4, RBI), Stankus (2-3, double, RBI), Crimp (1-3) and Rademacher (0-2, RBI). Defensively, Bryan Baldwin was on the mound for Rockford. Baldwin went the distance in securing his fifth win. He gave up one run in the second inning and two in the fourth. His line for the game was 7 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K. Rockford beat Jenison once more, in their last OK Red conference game of the season on Wednesday, May 26. The Rams mercied the Wildcats 10-0 in five innings behind another solid pitching performance from Joe Kropiewnicki. The Ram offense wasn’t as prolific as it had been recently, as they had just four hits for the game. They did capitalize on 13 walks, one error, two wild pitches and two passed balls by the Wildcat defense. Offensively, Rockford was led by Farmer (2-2, two RBI, two SB), Nostrant (1-1, RBI, two SB) and Stankus (1-2). Kropiewnicki scattered four hits and didn’t give up a run in claiming his eighth win of the season. He went the complete five innings walking one and striking out two. With the win, Rockford claims at least a share of the OK Red crown. […]

Rams start baseball season with two wins in Indiana

April 14, 2011 // 0 Comments

The Rockford varsity baseball team swept Westview High School (Ind.) in a doubleheader on Monday, April 4. The first game was an extra inning battle that went 10 innings. The Rockford Rams jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the first inning, resulting from a Drew Farmer double, Christian Leinesch single, Shain Showers sacrifice fly and Brandon Nostrant RBI single. The Warriors scored three in the third and one in the fourth off Ram southpaw Austin Stephens. At the end of six, the Rams trailed 4-2. In the seventh inning, senior Andrew Rademacher led the inning with a single and junior Farmer hit a two-run homerun to tie the game and take it into extra innings. The game was scoreless in the eighth and ninth innings. In the 10th, the Rams scored the winning run off a sacrifice fly by junior Matt Boonstra, who drove in fellow junior Tony DiLeo. After holding the Warriors scoreless in the bottom of the 10th, the Rams notched a 5-4 win in their first contest of the season. Offensively, the Rams were led by Farmer, who was 3-5 with a homerun, along with junior Nostrant, who was 2-5 with one RBI, and Rademacher, who was 2-3 with one run scored. Fellow senior southpaw Joe Kropiewnicki took over for Stephens in the fifth inning and looked great. Kropiewnicki went the final six innings allowing no runs, one hit, one walk and had eight strikeouts. The line for Stephens on the day was four innings, six hits, five walks, five strikeouts and three earned runs. In the second game, the Ram bats exploded for eight runs in the first inning and one each in the second, third and fourth innings. They won the second game 11-4 and were never in trouble after the huge offensive burst in the first. Everyone joined in offensively including Farmer again, who was 2-3, along with junior Showers, who was 2-4 with a homerun, and DiLeo, who was 2-4 with a double. Nostrant gave a 3-4 performance that included a homerun, and junior Ian Stankus was 3-4 with a triple. Rademacher was 1-2, junior Max Crimp was 1-2, and freshman Kory Young was 2-3 with an RBI. On the mound, senior Caleb Post started the […]