By Brodee Gillam
Under head coach Drew Huard, the Stars have been dominant at home. Specifically, LCC was 17-3 heading into the home doubleheader against St. Clair County CC.
This trend continued as LCC won both games at Westside Park on April 10, 7-2 and 12-11.
LCC's offense continued to click, scoring five or more runs in each of the last 11 games.
Freshman starter Michael Barno struggled to begin the game, giving up three walks, four hits and six earned runs in one and a third innings pitched. Freshman Sam Cross came in and steadied the course.
Cross only gave up one earned run in two and two-thirds innings on the mound, while striking out seven batters.
Huard said even with all of the contributing factors, the Stars pitchers still performed well.
"Something I preach every single day, the next man up mentality," Huard said. "When one guy doesn't do as good as they would like, the next man has to step up for the team and keep us in position to win.
"We were fortunate enough to have Sam Cross have a good outing for us."
Sophomore Hunter Ruhstorfer's bat has been a critical part of the high-octane offense, and it showed in the nightcap.
Ruhstorfer had a home run, a double and a single with two runs scored and a team-leading four RBIs.
Huard said Ruhstorfer's play is critical to the success of the Stars.
"I think everything Hunter does feeds the team," Huard said. "The weight is on his shoulders but that's probably a good thing. Everybody knows he's a big part of the success that we have in our program.
"Everybody feeds off his energy and leadership."
Ruhstorfer said when he sees his teammates on base, when he's at the plate, it brings out the best in him.
"Having players on base (has) elevated my performance," Ruhstorfer said. "It makes you want to produce for your teammates to get them going as well."
Huard had a message for the fans of the team.
"There's a big game, big series coming up next weekend (April 21) against Jackson," Huard said. "It will probably decide the conference (championship). … The guys are playing hard, practicing hard (so) we'd love to see some of the fans reach out.
"I can promise we'll put on a good show for them."
LCC's home doubleheader against Jackson College on Saturday, April 21 starts at 1 p.m. at Westside Park.