Baseball: South Elgin edges Huntley on walk
Updated: March 31, 2012 7:57PM
The old baseball adage that a walk is as good as a hit certainly proved to be true for South Elgin on Saturday.
In fact, David Goins’ bases-loaded walk with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning gave the Storm a dramatic 6-5 nonconference win over visiting Huntley. After a season-opening loss, the Storm have won three in a row.
Goins, the ninth-place hitter in the South Elgin lineup, had already reached base safely on a walk, a fielder’s choice and a single to right his first three times to the plate. With the game on the line in the seventh inning and a 2-2 count, Goins stayed alive by fighting off two foul balls before taking the final two pitches out of the strike zone to force in the winning run.
“It was intense,” said Goins. “ My heart was racing. I was so nervous, but I just kept battling. These are the situations that really get you going. My teammates helped to give me the confidence I needed.”
Huntley (4-3) was plagued by six errors in the game and South Elgin took advantage to score four unearned runs, including two in the bottom of the seventh.
The Red Raiders had just taken a 5-4 lead in the top of the seventh on a Jake Perkins RBI single before the Storm rallied for the win.
Andrew Weedman started the Storm’s comeback with a leadoff single. He went to second when the ball was mishandled in the outfield A sacrifice bunt by Jake Buhman pushed Weedman to third. The next batter, David Palmer, hit a weak ground ball to third base. Weedman broke for the plate on the play.
Huntley third baseman Bryce Only fielded the ball cleanly and threw home to try and prevent the tying run from scoring, but his throw hit a sliding Weedman in the back, allowing him to score.
Huntley pitcher Craig Klein walked the next two batters to load the bases before walking Goins to force in the game-winning run.
“What a crazy game,” said South Elgin coach Jim Kating.
“It was ugly, but it was exciting. With it being cold and the wind blowing in we knew we were going to have to manufacture some runs today. It’s something we have been working on.”
The Storm scored its first three runs in the third inning and took a 3-1 lead with the help of two throwing errors by Huntley on sacrifice bunt attempts. Weedman delivered the big blow in the inning with a two-run single down the left-field line.
Huntley scored three runs in the top of the fourth to pull ahead 4-3. However, South Elgin answered right back with a run in the bottom of the fourth to tie the game at 4-4 when Goins reached on a fielder’s choice, stole second and scored on an RBI single by Ryan Ford.
South Elgin reliever Eric Stazy gave up four runs, two earned, in four innings of work to pick up his first win of the season.
Nick Corpolongo had an RBI single for the Red Raiders in the fourth inning. Mark Skonieczny drove in Huntley’s first run with a sacrifice fly in the first inning.
“We just hurt ourselves all day,” said Huntley coach Andy Jakubowski.
“We had made only four errors in our first six games and today we made six. Then we left nine runners on base. We load the bases in the first inning with nobody out with a chance to blow the game open and we get one run. Then the walks. Obviously we still have to work on every phase of the game.”