Baseball: St Laurence, Joliet Catholic end in tie
Updated: April 19, 2012 9:05PM
The game started like it might turn into a slugfest between two strong teams when No. 10 Joliet Catholic and No. 2 St. Laurence each scored twice in the first inning.
Pitchers on both sides then settled down Thursday and the game in Burbank ended in a 2-2 tie after nine innings when it was stopped because of darkness.
“It was two great teams (that) battled their butts off,’’ Joliet Catholic coach Jared Voss said. “It was one of the better high school games I’ve been around. It’s just unfortunate it had to come down to darkness.’’
“I thought it was a really well-played game on both ends,’’ St. Laurence coach Pete Lotus said. “Obviously, they’re a good team. I was very proud of our guys after going down 2-0 to them right away.’’
Joliet Catholic (12-3-1) grabbed the early lead with five straight hits, including an RBI triple by Chris Tschida and a run-scoring single from pitcher Nate Searing.
“I thought it was a great job by Kyle Estand to battle through that and we got the big play by Mike Solofra to throw the guy out at home,’’ Lotus said.
Joliet Catholic had a 2-0 lead and the bases loaded and one out in the first when right fielder Solofra caught a flyball and threw to catcher T.J. Marik to get the runner tagging from third to end the inning.
St. Laurence (19-1-1) responded with two runs in the bottom of the first. A leadoff walk led to an RBI single by Mike Kornacker and Zach Lewis added a two-out RBI base hit.
“To come back against them and get two runs was big for us,’’ Lotus said.
Searing pitched seven innings for the Hilltoppers and Kevin Duchene struck out four in the final two innings.
“His last three outings he’s done a great job,’’ Voss said of Searing. “He was one of our really good pitchers last year so we’re going to lean on him a lot this year, too.’’
Joe Siebenaler relieved Estand after five innings and Brad Wood pitched the ninth for St. Laurence.
Darkness won’t be an issue Friday because both teams are playing under the lights — St. Laurence against neighborhood rival Marist at Standard Bank Stadium and Joliet Catholic at Lockport.