Marjory Stoneman Douglas Dominates on the Diamond: Varsity Knocks off Defending Champs and JV Sweeps Doubleheader
Todd Fitz-Gerald talks to his team after win. {Valeria Sandoval}

By: Matt Rothman

It was quite a few days for the Marjory Stoneman Douglas, with the varsity baseball team knocking off the defending 6A State Championship Doral Academy on Tuesday while the junior varsity team swept a doubleheader on Saturday. 

The varsity team moved to 4-0 this year with a 3-0 win over Doral Academy, four days after winning the BCAA Tier 1 Championship.

A pair of University of Florida commits faced off on the mound, with Christian Rodriguez getting the edge on his future teammate. Rodriguez took a no-hitter in the sixth inning, allowing no runs, one hit, and striking out 13 in 6.1 innings. 

It’s a really special feeling playing a great team with great coaches,” Rodrigues said. “I try not to let it get too personal but in the back of my mind I know a lot of my boys are on that team. It was a great team win for us. We all grinded at bats and I just helped us stay in the game and give our hitters a chance to relax and do their thing.”

Christian Rodriguez. {Jake Stephens}
Christian Rodriguez. {Jake Stephens}

MSD got the scoring going win the second with Niko Benestad recording a hit before Jacob Herzberg entered the game as a courtesy runner and came around to score on a wild pitch. Alex Lazar then walked with the bases loaded to extend the lead to 2-0, and Alex Rodriguez had the team’s second hit and came around to score to make it 3-0 in the fourth.  James Smith recorded the final two outs as MSD has still not allowed an earned run through their first four games. 

“I thought Christian really pitched well and dominated,” said Head Coach Todd Fitz-Gerald. “It was a great game between two quality teams. It always feels good when you can win a close game like that. They were well prepared, and they pitched well, but we just capitalized on a few more mistakes than they did.”

Next, they play Miami Springs High School on Thursday, March 4, at 6:30 p.m. The Golden Hawks are 1-0 this year and won 21 games a season ago. 

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas junior varsity baseball team also shined on Saturday, sweeping a doubleheader against Doral Academy. The Eagles team features a pair of college commits in Drew Freeman (Louisville) and Lorenzo Laurel (University of Florida). Nick Diaz also shined for the Eagles, hitting a grand slam and knocking in five runs in the first game.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas Dominates on the Diamond: Varsity Knocks off Defending Champs and JV Sweeps Doubleheader
Nick Diaz. {Jennifer Diaz}

Jake Rizzo drove in three runs, and Jacob Goodrich homered for MSD. Bennett Gary pitched two hitless innings to secure the 14-1 win. The Eagles then won 3-2 in the second game behind a strong start from Andrew Sarro before Gavin Broome earned the save. Cade Raley had the game-winning two-run double to push MSD to 2-0-1 this year while Matthew Toback continued to swing a hot bat.

Next, the JV team is set to play a doubleheader against J.P. Taravella on Saturday, March 4, starting at 10 a.m.

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Matt Rothman
Matt Rothman
Matt Rothman is a 2018 graduate from Florida Gulf Coast University receiving his bachelor’s degree in journalism and then graduated from the University of Florida as a graduate student.