Softball: Beverly Bandits defeat junior/senior all-stars 4-1
By Paul Johnson For Sun-Times Media June 18, 2014 10:50PM
Updated: July 21, 2014 3:50PM
Recently graduated Downers Grove North pitcher Dale Ryndak knew entering Wednesday’s Beverly Bandits game against a team of junior and senior high school all-stars she’d be in for a battle.
“That’s an awesome team,” Ryndak said. “I played against most of those girls in high school, and they crush the ball. I knew every kid coming up was the best hitter on their team. They knew how to hit me, too. I had to work really hard to get those outs. This was no regular high school game. Those kids are good and they deserve to be here.”
The Arizona State recruit and Gatorade Illinois Player of the Year got a taste of what life will be like moving forward in college, and she was still strong. She pitched the Bandits to a 4-1 win at the Dome at the Ballpark at Rosemont. She allowed four hits and struck out just three, but she managed to hold the star-studded all-star roster to one run.
The high school all-stars’ lone run came in the top of the third and it gave them a 1-0 lead. Glenbard North’s Sarah Petzhold singled and scored on an error. But that was all the damage Ryndak would allow.
“She’s a really good pitcher,” said Manteno graduate and Sun-Times Player of the Year Brook Stulga. “She moves the ball well. She throws really hard. I think we adjusted well the second time through the lineup. Holding a team with all the talent that this team has to one run is quite an accomplishment.”
The Bandits did all of their scoring in a four-run bottom of the fourth. Maddi Doane doubled, Brooke Wyderski (Marist) reached on a fielder’s choice and Jessica Mrozek walked to load the bases. Rowan McGuire came through with a two-run double, followed by a two-run single from Rachel O’Malley to provide the final margin.
For Stulga, it was a chance to be on the same side as many of the players she competed against in high school.
“It’s kind of weird being on the other side cheering them on,” Stulga said. “Of course, you always want to win.”
The Bandits are leaving Thursday morning for a tournament in California, and team founder Bill Conroy wanted to make sure he used only players from the Chicago area in the game. He had about three of his regular players at his disposal.
“We had to learn the signals and all of that, it kind of evens the playing field,” Conroy said.
The event originally was scheduled to be outdoors on the Chicago Bandits’ field, but it was moved into the Dome because of rainstorms.