Prep Baseball Report

No. 6 Lemont exacts revenge on No. 25 Oak Forest

By Ryan Quigley
Area Scout

JOLIET, IL- The third time proved to be a charm for senior lefthander Charlie Wright and the No. 6 Lemont Indians when it came to finally beating Oak Forest this season. In the previous two weeks, Wright had thrown well against the Bengals twice, but the Indians dropped a May 12 contest 4-2 and lost 4-3 on May 21.

Lemont coach Brian Storako’s gamble paid off in saving senior ace Jake Latz for Saturday’s regional championship contest, as Wright delivered a complete-game 5-0 shutout at Joliet Catholic’s Gillespie Field on Wednesday in the Joliet Catholic Class 3A Regional semifinal.

Early on, Wright (Joliet JC) was in a pitching duel with Oak Forest senior right-hander Dan Hlad.  Hlad recorded all three outs in the first via strikeout, stranding two base runners: a hit by pitch, and LSU-bound senior catcher Mike Papierski’s hard hit single up the middle. 

Wright answered Hlad in the top half of the second by striking out the side in order, all swinging.  After retiring the leadoff hitter in the bottom of the second, three consecutive Oak Forest fielding errors helped Lemont get on the board, as senior outfielder Eric Tucker eventually scored from third base on a passed ball giving the Indians a 1-0 lead and all Wright would need.

Lemont did real damage in the bottom half of the fifth inning as Danny Dowlarz led off with a single, the first of three consecutive Indian hits.  Lead-off hitter Ryan Folliard executed a perfect hit-and-run sending Dowlarz from first to third, and an outfield error by the Bengals allowed Dowlarz to score sending Folliard to second.  Senior outfielder  Jamie Glista fisted a ball into center for a single to score Folliard, and after a Papierski flyout, Lemont’s meat of the order: Mike Wisz and Jake Terrazas provided the knockout punch.  Wisz singled back up the middle, scoring Glista, and Terrazas RBI-double in the right center gap plated Wisz, capping the scoring for the day giving Lemont a 5-0 advantage. 

All the while Wright continued to change speeds with a fastball, curveball combination to keep the Oak Forest hitters at bay. Despite scattering seven hits, not one Oak Forest hitter advanced past second base on the day.  The senior southpaw finished with eight strikeouts and only one walk in finishing off his 109 pitch masterpiece.

Lead-off hitter Brian Richard led Oak Forest offensively going 2-for-4 with a single and a double to deep center in the fifth.  Drew Dominik replaced Hlad in the fifth, throwing 1.2 innings of scoreless relief.

Lemont improves to 29-5 and awaits the winner of today’s 4:30 p.m. matchup between No. 3 Joliet Catholic and No. 17 Lincoln-Way West.  The winner will be greeted by Lemont’s ace lefthander Jake Latz, who has yet to allow an earned run all season, on Saturday at 10 a.m. for the Joliet Catholic regional championship.  Oak Forest ends another successful campaign at 25-11 ranked No. 25 in PBR’s final regular season poll.

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