By Andrew Johnson

MUSKEGON – The Muskegon Community College baseball team is still trying to find its groove this spring.LSJ Logo incert

The Jayhawks, who returned 15 players from a 29-win team last season, have lost five of their last six games, including a doubleheader sweep at the hands of Grand Rapids Community College on their home field on Thursday, 3-0 and 19-8.

The way the Jayhawks lost the two games was representative of their season so far. In the first game they had good pitching but little offense, with 11 batters striking out.

In the nightcap it was the opposite. MCC scored more than enough to win, but five Jayhawk pitchers walked a combined 12 Grand Rapids batters.

MCC relief pitcher Greg Park holds his balance after delivering the pitch. Photo/Jason Goorman

MCC relief pitcher Greg Park holds his balance after delivering the pitch. Photo/Jason Goorman

MCC is now 9-15 overall and 2-5 in the Western Conference of the Michigan Community College Athletic Association.

“They just need to play better,” said MCC Coach Greg Guzman. “The freshmen are following, and they’re trying to see what it’s like and feel their way. The sophomores just aren’t playing well and overall we’re not playing well.

“We just haven’t put it together yet, one game it’s pitching and the next game it’s hitting. We haven’t put it together yet, and we’re in the mid season. It’ll be a short year if we don’t figure it out and get it going.”

In Game 1, Rhett Holwerda took the mound for the Jayhawks and gave up only two earned runs on eight hits, but ultimately took the loss.

Offense wasn’t a problem for the Jayhawks in Game 2, when they totaled 10 hits.

Ryan McClelland was 2-for-3 with two doubles and two RBIs for the Jayhawks. Robert Spencer added a hit and had two RBIs and scored two runs.

But the spotty pitching allowed the Raiders take control early and coast to the win. GRCC scored five runs in the second inning, four runs in the third to grab a big lead, then capped it off with eight runs in the seventh.

The Raiders pounded out 15 hits in the nightcap. They had 29 base runners in the game.

Despite the Jayhawks’ recent struggles, several players said they are confident their fortunes will turn around.

“It’s just a lot of slumps. We’re all kind of slumping at the same time,” said Spencer, MCC’s second baseman. “We can’t find a groove right now. Games have been cancelled (due to the weather) and then we’ll have 10 days off. Once we start playing like we did in Florida we’ll be fine.”

The Jayhawks will visit Mott College for a doubleheader on Saturday.