Youngsville's Nate Lucks. File photo by Andy Close.

Lucks Fans 16 as Eagles Beat Iroquois to Move to 4-0

April 10, 2023

YOUNGSVILLE, Pa. – Nate Lucks was dominant on the mound and Youngsville was able to manufacture four runs off Iroquois ace Ben Burkhardt in a 4-2 victory on Monday.

Lucks struck out 16 and retired the first nine batters he faced in the win.

“Their top five, I knew they were the tough hitters, so I gave them my best, and the rest I focused, threw strikes, and let my defense do work,” Lucks said.

See Lucks’ full interview:

Burkhardt, meanwhile, was equally dominant early, but the Eagles got to him in the third inning. It started with Ethan Senz putting down a bunt and Burkhardt fielded it but threw it away, allowing Senz go get into second, coming home moments later on James Johnson’s RBI double.

“Going in we knew it was going to be their ace against our ace, so we knew it was going to be a pitcher’s duel,” said Youngsville coach Eddie Dorunda. “It started with Ethan Senz getting that bunt down and that started everything. That was huge. We stole a couple of bases and had some timely hits.”

Johnson came around to score on a passed ball to make it 2-0 in the third, with Iroquois getting on the board in the top of the fourth on doubles by Reilly Brown and Joe Doverspike.

“We had a couple of hitters that we had to worry about, but we knew Nate have a good chance of shutting them down,” Dorunda said. “He pounds the zone, throws that curveball, and is just a bulldog out there.”

Youngsville got that run right back in the fifth and once again it was Johnson serving as the catalyst, doubling with two outs and coming home after Burkhardt’s pickoff throw sailed into the outfield.

Lucks helped his own cause in the sixth, doubling and coming home on David Manning’s fielder’s choice.

Lucks ran into a little bit of trouble in the seventh, allowing a 2-out RBI single to Matt Schaffner, but he came back to strike out Hunter Chew to end the game.

Lucks allowed just three hits and one earned run.

Burkhardt, meanwhile, allowed just two hits and one earned run.

“If one guy doesn’t do it, the next guy is ready to step up and get the job done,” Dorunda said about his team’s 4-0 start. “Look around, this is the most people we’ve seen down here in a while. You can feel it. We’re just taking it one game at a time.”

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