By Phil Anastasia
Nick Browne is trying to work the middle of the field.
Mike Krusinski is trying to remain relaxed.
Chris Jones is trying to stay back on the baseball.
None of the Bishop Eustace players is trying to hit home runs.
But the Bash Brothers have been clearing the fences at a remarkable rate.
Through the first half of the season, Browne, Krusinski and Jones have combined for 20 home runs as Bishop Eustace has fashioned a 16-1 record and grabbed the No. 1 spot in The Inquirer Top 10 rankings.
"I'm just trying to stay back and swing at good pitches," said Browne, a junior right-fielder who leads South Jersey with eight home runs after hitting a grand slam in the top of the ninth inning of Bishop Eustace's 10-6 win over Paul VI on Saturday.
Jones, a junior shortstop, has bounced back in a big way from an elbow injury that ended his sophomore season: He has five home runs from the leadoff spot.
Krusinski, a senior left-fielder and Delaware commit, has seven home runs -- including four in a row in an uncanny stretch over two games in the Tom Heinkel Tournament at Bishop Eustace on April 12.
The trio ranks No. 1 (Browne), No. 2 (Krusinski) and tied for No. 3 (Jones) in South Jersey in home runs. They also have combined for 35 extra-base hits.
"We've got a solid lineup 1-through-9," Jones said of the Crusaders. "Everybody has been getting good swings."
South Jersey's top-ranked team has balance and power through the batting order. But the heavy-hitting trio of Browne, Jones and Krusinski are the Crusaders' engine room.
"It's a 'you go, we go' kind of rule," Krusinski said. "One guys starts hitting, we all want to hit."
-- Contact Phil Anastasia at firstname.lastname@example.org
-- Follow @PhilAnastasia