TAMPA — Sickles senior Dylan Eskew is cool with a live, 90-plus mph fastball, a wicked curve and a nasty slider.
So far in 2019 he’s been darn near unhittable.
In 18 combined innings, including one inning of relief, Eskew has given up three hits and no runs. In three starts he has thrown a no-hitter and two one-hitters, the latest coming Tuesday night against Class 8A, District 5 rival Plant.
Final score: Sickles 3, Plant 0 — with hardly a worry with Eskew on the mound.
“At this point we almost expect that every time you give Eskew the ball you expect him to have a performance like he had tonight,” Sickles coach Eric Luksis said. “He’s been that strong and confident. It gives the whole team a lot of confidence.”
As it turned out on Tuesday, Sickles (5-1, 2-0) scored all the runs it needed in the first inning when Trey Bacon singled, advanced to third on a fielder’s choice and scored on an error.
Bacon scored again in the third inning after slapping another single, stealing a base and scoring on a Danny Bernstein single. The last Gryphons’ insurance run came in the sixth when Justin Turk scored on a three-base throwing error.
Take away the errors and Plant (5-2, 0-1) was pretty stingy behind its two pitchers, Leo Oshinski and Mathew Coker, who combined to allow only three Gryphon hits.
“We knew Plant would play us tough because Plant is always tough and well coached,” Luksis said. “This was a very good win for us. We feel good about where we are at right now.”