April 5, 2024

Mount Dora Baseball Shines: 5 Wins in 6 Game Stretch

2.6 min read| Published On: April 5th, 2024|

By Kyle Coppola

Mount Dora Baseball Shines: 5 Wins in 6 Game Stretch

2.6 min read| Published On: April 5th, 2024|

After starting the season 0-7, the Mount Dora Baseball team has settled into a good rhythm in the last few weeks. The team has won 5 of their last 6 games and now has a 5-8 record. While the year has had its challenges, things are beginning to turn in the right direction for Mount Dora Baseball.

(The Mount Dora High baseball team has been all smiles the past two weeks. The team has been coming together nicely despite an 0-7 start to the year. They have won 5 of their last 6 games. Photo Credit – Joe Ott Photography “Fan Zone”)

Last night’s win against the Belleview Rattlers 4-0 is a great indicator of where this team is at. Ethan McLain had a big night last evening as he led the Hurricanes with 3 hits on the evening. Jacob James had a double and got an RBI. Miguel Petit, Ryan Crow, and Noah Macinness also contributed with RBIs. “The boys are coming together nicely. We made some pitching changes that have paid off. These guys are accepting their roles and we have come a long way this year. This is my first year coaching High School baseball so I have had to adapt as well.” says head coach Mike Matulia.

Noah Macinness is an exciting freshman. He scored two runs last evening for Mount Dora. “I brought Noah up from JV earlier this year becasue he’s a hustler and a hard-worker. He sees the ball well and he has worked his tail off to become our lead off hitter. You don’t see that much as a freshman so he’s been a great player to have on our team.” says coach Matulia. Macinness is hitting .353, has 12 hits and leads the team in runs scored as a freshman.

(Noah Macinness is one of the most exciting young prospects on the Mount Dora High School roster. He averages .353 has 12 hits and leads the team with 7 runs scored. Photo Credit – Joe Ott Photography “Fan Zone”)

Mount Dora’s Jacob James pitched one of the best games of his career. James pitched 6 innings and struck out 12 batters in the process. Belleview was completely rattled and could not find a way on base. James gave up only 2 hits and 3 walks the entire evening. By the time Trent Sims came in for relief in the 7th inning, the game was well in hand. Sims struck out 1 batter as he picked up the save. “We finally found our main two pitcher’s it’s been a challenge this year but at this point we are getting closer to peaking at the right time. We aren’t there yet but the guys are excited to be winning games and the team is in the best shape it’s been all season.” says head coach Mike Matulia.

(Jacob James leads the team in strikeouts this season. He has a 2.86 ERA. Photo Credit – Joe Ott Photography “Fan Zone”)

For Belleview, pitcher Brady Loebig did not play a bad game, but Mount Dora was just too strong at the plate. Giving up 1 run in the first 4 innings did not help, but Loebig did strike out 4 batters but gave up 3 walks as well. Mount Dora was able to produce 7 hits off Loebig, and that really impacted the game.

The Hurricanes are in the middle of a 4-game road trip. Upcoming games include Atlantic on Monday, East Ridge on Tuesday, and South Lake next Thursday. Next week will prove pivotal in the season. The games against East Ridge and South Lake, in particular, are of interest as these are cross-town rivals who are both having up-and-down years.

For Jacob James, he has now pitched 22 innings and leads the Canes in strikeouts with 36. If James, along with fellow Ace Cooper Chapman, can settle into a rhythm down the stretch, this team could be an underdog waiting to happen.

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About the Author: Kyle Coppola

Kyle Coppola was born in Newton, Massachusetts and received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communications from Curry College in 2016. After traveling to Florida on a family vacation, he decided he could not get enough of the warm weather and made the move from snowy Massachusetts to central Florida 8 years ago.

For the last decade Kyle has gained valuable experience in social media content creation, marketing and sales, writing, video production, sports announcing and even broadcasting for local radio stations, such as FM 102.9 in The Villages and FM 91.5 in Massachusetts. Every year he volunteers at The Villages Charter High School as a play-by-play sports announcer for the football games as well as a public address announcer for the basketball games, including the annual Battle at The Villages Tournament.

Outside the office Kyle is a husband and father to two beautiful girls along with their cat. In his spare time he likes to spend time with his family, travel, play golf and swim. He is also a huge sports junkie and even bigger motorsports fan and loves to attend racing events when he can.

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