Boys Prep of the Week: Blaze Vazquez, Naples baseball

Blaze’s bat caught fire in the 4-2 win and helped push his team to the title at the Westminster Academy Spring Break Invitational last week in Fort Lauderdale.

Vazquez finished the tournament batting .555 (5-for-9) and three runs scored to ignite his team and lift his season average to .464.

“He’s a player. When he’s hitting, we’re going,” Eagles coach Rick Turner said. “In the tournament he swung about as good as I’ve seen him.”

“As a team, we hit the ball really well,” Vazquez said. “We really came together as a team during that tournament. No other team could touch us.”

“I’d like to have a few more players like him,” Turner added.

And no team could touch the scorchers coming off his bat either.

After a hitting a home run that went “360 feet out and 360 foot in the air,” according to Turner, Vazquez had an even more emphatic result in his next at-bat.

“I was really solid on the ball and it seemed like I was able to swing all the way through. (The pitcher) threw me a fastball inside that I crushed down the left-field line,” Vazquez said of the line drive that only stopped because of the outfield wall. “The home run came on a curveball so it had more loft on it.”

“If he’d have the home run as hard as he hit that double, they’d still be talking about it. It was just a shot,” Turner said.

Blaze, his given name, hasn’t made any decisions on where he would like to play after his senior season, but said he likely will take the junior-college route to a four-year school.

OTHERS CONSIDERED:

Jose Cartagena, Estero track — Won the 1,600- and 800-meters and 4x800 relay at the Lee County Athletic Conference meet.

Donato DiNorcia, Seacrest baseball — Had seven hits and six runs in three games, including a complete-game shutout on the mound.

Matt Heldreth, Community School lacrosse — Scored nine goals, had five assists in two victories last week.

Brandon Tirado, Gulf Coast track and field — Took first place in the discus at Disney’s Track and Field Showcase in Orlando.

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