Baseball: Zack Thomas, Joliet West conquer Andrew
By Dick Goss email@example.com July 18, 2012 9:32PM
Updated: August 20, 2012 12:01PM
Joliet West junior left-hander Zack Thomas gave his teammates the credit for getting him just enough runs.
But the fact was, Thomas did a good job of supporting himself.
Thomas slashed a two-run single in a five-run fifth inning and singled in the tying run while setting up the winning run in the sixth as the Tigers rallied from behind twice to overcome Andrew 7-6 Wednesday in the semifinals of the Lockport Regional in the IHSBCA/Phil Lawler Classic summer state baseball tournament at Ed Flink Field.
West (14-10 and the No. 8 seed) will meet Joliet Catholic in Thursday’s noon championship game. A berth in next week’s state tournament at Illinois Benedictine and North Central is on the line.
“The guys hit the ball,” said Thomas, who had three of West’s seven hits. “We’ve been getting hitting all through the lineup and putting runs on the board.”
Thomas admitted he did not have his best stuff on the mound, but he competed through six innings.
“Zack was erratic but he battled,” West coach John Karczewski said. “Any time you can beat Andrew, it’s a good win. Their 3-hitter (Dan Durkin) is one of the best and their 4-hitter (Zach Klockowski) is right behind him.”
Andrew (10-9), the No. 13 seed, reached Thomas in the sixth on Durkin’s RBI single and Kevin Walsh’s go-ahead two-run double for a 6-5 lead. The Tigers responded in the bottom of the inning to make a loser of Thunderbolts reliever Andrew Arroyave. Thomas tied it with a two-out single to right and Larry Holman, who delivered clutch hits in front of Thomas in the fifth (go-ahead two-run single) and sixth (bunt single), scored the game-winner on a wild pitch.
Right-hander Alex Stobbe struck out all three Andrew batters in the seventh for the save.
“It was a back-and-forth game,” Andrew coach Dave DeHaan said. “We had opportunities and didn’t take advantage. We struck out too much (12 times).
“I’m really proud of our guys, though. We played great ball the last week. To beat Lockport and Lincoln-Way East and be right there with these guys, that’s a good sign.”