Prep Baseball Report

Providence Catholic Staves Off Homewood-Flossmoor, Advances to 4A Super-Sectional

By Kevin Cronin
Area Scout

Providence Catholic defeated No.18 Homewood-Flossmoor in a sectional championship game Friday night, by the score of 3-2. Uncommitted junior, Alex Alberico got the start for the Celtics as he faced off against, uncommitted junior Waylon Deck.

With the game tied at one in the fourth inning, Providence Catholic took their first lead of the game. Senior Kyle Hussey, a Lewis University commit, drove a one out double for the Celtics. Hussey would later come around to score on a passed ball after Illinois commit, sophomore Ryan Jefferson moved Hussey to third. 

Providence added an insurance run in the fifth to make it 3-1. Senior Sebastian Biggs, an Ave Maria University commit, got the inning started with a bunt single. Sophomore Gavin Gomez followed with a hit by pitch to put runners on first and second. Cain Headrick, a Lewis University commit, sharply singled to left field scoring Biggs.

After giving up an early run in the first to make it 1-0 Homewood-flossmoor, Alberico would get himself settled in and regain control of the game. Alberico controlled the zone with a four-seam fastball that sat 88-90 mph. Alberico went to an 11/5 curveball, with sharp downward bite at times at 72-75 mph as one of his main out pitches. He also showed a changeup with sink, at 80-83 mph and a 10/4 slider at 76-77 mph. In total, Alberico allowed one earned run on four hits, two walks and struck out four. 

Uncommitted junior RHP Jack Wajda came out of the bullpen for the Celtics and was nails the rest of the way. Wajda twirled three scoreless innings, striking out two and allowing one hit. 

Wajda pounded the zone, throwing 84% of his 32 pitches for strikes. Wajda has a 6-foot-3, 205-pound, wide-shouldered, strong build, clean, loose arm action from a high ¾ slot. He commanded the fastball which works mostly straight at 84-86 mph. His slider, at 72-74 mph, is an above-average offering, with 10/4 shape, late sweeping action, feel  He also flashed a changeup with fading action at 73-74 mph.

Sophomore Dillon Head, a University of Michigan commit, went 3-for-4 for the Vikings in the loss with a double and two runs scored. Junior Shai Robinson, an Illinois State commit, went 1-for-3 with a double. 

Despite taking the loss, Deck threw four innings giving up one earned run on three hits, one walk and struck out five for Homewood-Flossmoor. Deck showed feel for the zone with his fastball that sat 83-86 mph. One of his favorite secondary offerings is a cutter with 10/4, tight action at 80-81 mph. He also showed a curveball at 70-72, a slider at 75-77 and a changeup at 79-80 mph.