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BASEBALL: St. Laurence takes advantage of Mount Carmel miscues

Mike Kornacker St. Laurence locks pitch against Mount Carmel St. Laurence Saturday April 27th 2013 Burbank. | Gary Middendorf~For Sun-Times

Mike Kornacker, of St. Laurence, locks in on a pitch against Mount Carmel at St. Laurence, Saturday, April 27th, 2013, in Burbank. | Gary Middendorf~For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: May 29, 2013 7:47AM



Mount Carmel coach Brian Hurry considers his team’s defense its biggest asset.

That wasn’t the case Saturday against St. Laurence.

Mount Carmel committed three costly errors and St. Laurence took advantage, registering a 7-4 Catholic League Blue win in Burbank.

All seven runs by the Vikings were unearned.

“Poor defense early in the game cost us,” Hurry said. “I think we have a very good defensive team. We had one bad inning.”

The No. 3 Caravan (19-4, 8-1) committed two errors in the first inning, which opened the floodgates and allowed the No. 4 Vikings (16-5, 9-1) to plate five runs.

Zach Lewis (2-for-4) and T.J. Marik recorded two-run singles and Ryan Rybakowski added a run-scoring base hit to give the Vikings a 5-1 edge against Caravan ace Jeremy Kravetz.

“That was huge,” said Lewis, the beneficiary of the 5-1 lead on the mound. “It took a lot of pressure off me.”

The Caravan cut the deficit to 5-4 with a three-run fourth inning. Ako Thomas drove home two runs on a double to center field and Josh Stowers followed with another two-bagger that sent Thomas home.

Stowers would later steal third base, putting the tying run 90-feet away. However, Oregon recruit Jerry Houston flied out to end the threat.

Mount Carmel would never get closer.

An error in the fifth inning allowed Roger Wilson to stroll to the plate and the junior made the Caravan pay. The right-handed hitting first baseman crushed a two-out, two-run homer to left field for a 7-4 advantage.

For Wilson, the clutch hit couldn’t have come at a better time.

“I’ve been thinking too much about previous at-bats and letting it get to me,” said Wilson, an Orland Park resident. “My mind was clear and it felt good to get my mojo back.”
Lewis slammed the door on the Caravan the final two innings. The senior allowed six hits, four walks and seven strikeouts in a 121-pitch effort.

Viking second baseman Mike Kornacker made a pair of fine plays that potentially helped avoid big innings.

“I didn’t have my best stuff today,” said Lewis, who relied heavily on his fastball. “I just kept trying to attack the zone.”

Kravetz scattered six hits, walked three and struck out one over five innings.

Jason Gasser was 2-for-3 for the Caravan.

“We were feeling good when we got it to 5-4,” Hurry said. “Laurence took advantage of our mistakes today. That’s what good teams do.”



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