Madison home-run greeting

Madison High School’s Colin Tuft, left, Jaden Kritsky (5) and Miguel Echazarreta raise their helmet to greet teammate James Triantos, following his home run against McLean. (Photo by Dave Facinoli)

Through their first three games of what has the potential to be an accomplished high-school baseball season, the Madison Warhawks have been impressive and dominating – outscoring opponents 44-0 and allowing just two hits in three five-inning games.

Madison blanked and no-hit host West Potomac, 19-0, in its season opener, shut out the visiting McLean Highlanders, 12-0, in game two, then downed the visiting W.T. Woodson Cavaliers,  13-0, May 1.

With a number of players who already have made commitments to play in college, some at Division I schools, Madison was ranked high in various preseason polls, locally, regionally and nationally, and is highly regarded.

“It’s just so great and so fun to be back playing high-school baseball after not having a season last year and being with all of our teammates,” said Madison shortstop and starting pitcher James Triantos. “That’s all we want to do is play.”

High-school spring sports seasons were canceled in 2020 because of the pandemic.

Triantos has been one of many top players for Madison so far, getting the start and win on the mound against West Potomac in four innings of no-hit ball, then as the leadoff batter having two hits – including a home run – and two RBI against McLean.

“We have to keep our focus on our goals. That has to be the No. 1 thing for us,” Triantos said.

Madison coach Mark Gjormand acknowledges the Warhawks have a lot of talent and potential. He is mindful, though, that the team has just three players – starting catcher Colin Tuft, starting third baseman Miguel Echazarreta and starting center fielder Davis Snyder – who were varsity members from the last time the Warhawks played in 2019.

“These players are fun to coach and they are confident. But we are still figuring things out,” Gjormand said. “We don’t know our pregame routines yet, like how to line up for the National Anthem. We are going to get a lot better.”

West Potomac had no hits and McLean just one,  a Jacob Lynes single with one out in the fourth inning. So Madison pitchers did not allow a hit for the first 81/3 innings to start the season. 

Against McLean, Madison had 10 hits. Echazarreta had three hits and three RBI and two stolen bases. Starting and winning pitcher Bryce Eldridge had two hits, including a long home run, and three RBI and Bo Kuhblank doubled. Bannon Brazell and Jaden Kritsky had singles. Eldridge already has two home runs.

The tall, right-handed Eldridge fanned two with no walks in three innings. Evan Blair (three strikeouts) and Ben Eldridge (two Ks) each pitched an inning.

Against West Potomac, Triantos had nine strikeouts and a walk and Mac Kopka threw the fifth to combine for the no-hitter.

Madison had 11 hits, with Triantos, Tuft and Bryce Eldridge each having three. Eldridge doubled and homered and drove in five runs. Tuft and Triantos each doubled and had three RBI.

For McLean in its loss to Madison, freshman right-hander Aiden Carey fanned the three batters he faced in the fifth inning. Spenser Zamagni retired the two batters he faced with a strikeout.

“I felt we did some things well,” McLean coach John Dowling said of his young team. “Give Madison credit. They had some great at-bats deep into counts and with two strikes.”

In Madison’s win over Woodson, the Warhawks had 11 hits and Snyder was the starter and winner, allowing one hit in four innings. Triantos homered and had four RBI, Eldridge and John Klein each had two hits, Cooper Hoffman had a hit and two RBI and Kritsky had a hit and an RBI.

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