Baseball: Marian Catholic nips Homewood-Flossmoor
By Pat Disabato firstname.lastname@example.org May 24, 2013 11:22PM
Homewood-Flossmoor's Patrick Sheehan steals second base. | Jim Karczewski~Sun-Times Media
Updated: June 27, 2013 6:55AM
Marian Catholic pitcher Ryan Waaso said after Friday night’s game against archrival Homewood-Flossmoor that he would have gone to greater lengths than usual to bring home a victory over the Vikings.
“I would have gone 10 innings,” he said.
Fortunately for Waaso and his right arm, only seven innings were required for Marian to register a 2-1 win over H-F in a Class 4A T.F. North Regional semifinal in front of approximately 300 spectators.
The defending Class 3A state champion Spartans (22-14) advance to play Lockport at 11 a.m. Saturday for the regional title.
“It’s real big,” Waaso said of beating H-F. “They’re our rivals.”
H-F wasted little time getting on the board, scoring its only run of the game in the first inning. Pat Sheehan stroked a one-out single and Jesse Forestell (2-for-3) roped a double to the left-center field gap for a 1-0 lead.
The lead stood until the third. Vikings pitcher Teddy Romas nicked Patrick Swanson with a 1-and-2 pitch. Swanson advanced to second on a wild pitch and scored when H-F second baseman Mike Kendrick bobbled Eric Hurley’s grounder and then threw wildly past first baseman James Sheehan.
“I’ve been hit over 10 times this year,” said Swanson, a Chicago Heights resident. “I’m used to it. I’m not afraid to take one for the team.”
Marian scored the decisive run in the fourth. After Erik Callaghan coaxed a one-out walk, Chris Baker ripped a shot on which left fielder Jacob Klemp attempted to make a diving, over-the-shoulder catch. The ball, however, popped out of Klemp’s glove, allowing Callaghan to score for a 2-1 lead. Baker was thrown out at third base trying to stretch his drive into a triple.
“I was sitting dead-red fastball,” Baker said of the pitch he drove. “I had to make up for the strikeout the last time (at-bat). I had to put it in play. I heard the crowd go dead silent. I was thinking, ‘Did he make the play?’ Then the crowd went wild.”
H-F (17-14) had two chances to tie the game. Forestell ripped a one-out single and Vashon Nutt came on to pinch run, representing the tying run. Nutt, however, was thrown out by catcher Brent Feldner trying to steal and James Sheehan grounded out, ending the inning.
In the seventh, Klemp singled with one out and Mike Kendrick, after falling behind 1-and-2 with two outs, came through with a single.
Waaso, however, got Quincy Jones to ground out to end the game and the Vikings season.
“We have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of,” H-F coach Todd Sippel said. “We just couldn’t come up with the big hit at the end.”
Waaso scattered seven hits, walked none and struck out two. Romas equally was effective, allowing six hits, two walks and striking out three.