GRC pitcher sets personal milestone

Published 12:00 pm Monday, May 13, 2024

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With players such as Matt Ginter having donned a Cardinal uniform, the George Rogers Clark High School baseball team has long been blessed with strong pitching talent. 

Recently, one such talent reached a personal milestone. 

Senior Lochlan Hansel reached 200 career strikeouts in a 10-0 victory in Mt. Sterling against Montgomery County to open the month of May. 

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“That’s just amazing,” said GRC Head Baseball Coach Eddie Brooks. “It just goes to show you the consistency he’s had in this program…and what a great leader [he is].” 

Hansel, considered by many the ace of a strong Cardinal pitching staff, has drawn interest from schools outside the commonwealth. 

Such interest culminated in him accepting a scholarship to play at Rend Lake Community College, a public community college near Mt. Vernon, Illinois. 

Two seasons ago, as a sophomore, Hansel played a vital role in the Cards’ surprise advancement to the 10th Region championship game. 

After the team narrowly defeated Mason County in a quarterfinal matchup, Hansel took the mound in a 10th Region semifinal game against Nicholas County, who entered the game with a 23-9 record. 

Pitching a gem, Hansel only gave up one run on five hits in a complete game victory, as the Cards walked away with a 7-1 win. 

During his junior year, Hansel was a key performer on a GRC pitching staff that led the 10th Region with a 2.32 earned run average (ERA) during the season. 

This year, he has continued to show signs of strength. 

In his last seven starts, he has gone 5-0 with two no-decisions. 

Arguably his most impressive performance as a starting pitcher came on Wednesday, April 24. 

Throwing in a home game against Lexington Catholic, who won the 11th Region Championship en route to an Elite Eight finish in 2023, Hansel allowed just one hit while striking out seven in a complete game as the Cards moved on to a 5-1 win. 

It was their second victory against the heavily respected Knights this season. 

As he demonstrated last year, Hansel – though typically a starting pitcher – can be called upon late in games if needed. 

On April 16, he struck out the side after entering the game in the seventh and final inning, enough to earn the save as the Cards won 5-1 against Bourbon County in Paris. 

Hansel’s most recent outing saw him defeat the Colonels once more, this time as a starting pitcher, as the Cards won 7-2 in a five-inning, rain-shortened contest on May 8th during which he struck out six batters. 

Yet it was one week earlier when personal history was made. 

Not only did the Cards win against Montgomery County, but Hansel’s seventh and final strikeout of the game equaled the milestone. 

“Always pounding the zone helps [and throwing] first pitch strikes,” he said. “It makes it sweet!” 

With the Cards having won eight of their last nine games, Hansel hopes to help keep GRC’s momentum going forward. 

“This is a really good team,” he said.