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Wolves sweep Panthers : Sports : Oswego Ledger-Sentinel : Hometown Newspaper for Oswego and Montgomery, Illinois
Wolves sweep Panthers
Oswego East clinches series with 11-7 victory over Oswego

by Christine Bolin Dascher


Perhaps the Oswego East baseball team would have been OK with winning the series against rival Oswego going into the third game with two wins already on Thursday.

The sweep, however, sounded - and was - so much sweeter for the Wolves, who defeated the Panthers, 11-7, at Oswego East.

The Wolves won the first game of the series, 10-6 after a big sixth inning on April 8. They then won the second game, 3-0, at Oswego on April 9. They are now 5-3 overall. Oswego East also swept Oswego in 2013 in the first Southwest Prairie Conference series of the season as well.

"I don't think there was any additional pressure (to get the sweep)," Oswego East head coach Bobby Kaminski said. "I think when you win the first two games of the series, it's easy to look past a team in Game 3 or come out flat - which I don't think we did. We came out swinging right from the gates."

"It's very exciting - (the seniors) are 6-0 against them in the past two years on varsity," Oswego East senior right fielder Isaiah Spencer added.

"(Games like this) gives us confidence to come back late in games when we get down."

Last Thursday, both teams scored at least one run in the first three innings of the game. The game was tied at 4 going into the bottom of the third before Oswego East tallied twice, led by an RBI double from first baseman Vince Schwartz.

In the top of the fourth, however, with junior designated hitter Zach Sparkman and sophomore second baseman Carter Turnquist on base with two outs, senior centerfielder Bryce Holm hit a three-run home run that pushed the Panthers ahead, 7-6.

"(Holm has) been struggling, so it was nice to see him break out of that a little bit," Oswego head coach Mark Johnson said.

Oswego (3-5 overall) held its lead until the bottom of the sixth when the Wolves scored five runs on four hits. Senior centerfielder Zach Behnke's RBI single tied the game at 7. He drove in junior Tyler Linna after he walked with one out. The hit also moved senior designated hitter Austin Kapusinski to third after he singled.

Behnke and Kapusinski then scored when the next batter, Spencer, produced his second two-RBI double of the game. He hit the first one in the first inning that allowed Linna and Behnke to reach home after they each singled.

Spencer eventually scored on junior second baseman Noah Anderson's RBI single.

"It was rough (not batting) the past two games (against Oswego East), so I took the opportunity to come out," said Spencer, who finished with four RBIs on two doubles.

The final run for the Wolves was tallied by junior Jonathan Schurr, who was senior left fielder Nick Dabrowski's pinch runner after Dabrowski reached base on a walk. Schurr scored from third when he stole home as Anderson stole second base.

"You could tell our guys were having some quality at-bats all day long," Kaminski said. "I felt confident in our hitters - even though we didn't score in the fourth or the fifth and after the home run - that we were going to at least tie it up and continue to put pressure on them."

Oswego led 1-0 after the top of the first when senior left fielder Charlie Jakubowski led the game off with a triple and scored on senior shortstop Mitch Wilson's ground out RBI.

Spencer's first two-RBI double of the game gave Oswego East the 2-1 advantage before the Panthers tallied twice more in the top of the second.

Senior first baseman Jerome Minick led the inning off with a walk and moved to second on Sparkman's single. Both reached home when senior catcher Jeff Pieroni hit a two out, two-RBI double that gave Oswego the 3-2 lead.

In the bottom of the inning, Schwartz led the second off with a double and got home on Anderson's first RBI single of the contest. Dabrowski reached base on an Oswego error and eventually scored on another Panther error for the 4-3 advantage.

The Panthers were able to tie the game at 4 when Jakubowski led off the third with a single, moved to third on Wilson's double and got home on junior third baseman Jake Rock's ground out RBI.

Senior Zach Hutten got the win for Oswego East. He allowed three runs in the last four innings, struck out six, walked one and gave up three hits.

Junior Cameron Paladines was the losing pitcher. In the final three innings, he walked two, struck out four, and allowed five runs on five hits.

"Guys are starting to swing the bat...but have to get our pitching on board, our base-running on board and our defense too," Johnson said. In Game 2 of the series, Oswego East scored once in the top of the second and twice in the seventh. Dabrowski finished with two RBIs with two hits and scored once while junior shortstop Trevor Kalish posted an RBI. Anderson had two hits.

"Nick Dabrowski came up big for us with a couple of key hits with runners in scoring position," Kaminski said. "(Junior) Zak Deverman also threw a great game. He had a great command of his fastball and worked both sides of the plate. We played good defense behind him."

Deverman earned the win on the mound for the Wolves after he gave up two hits, no walks and three strikeouts in the complete game shutout. Minick took the tough loss after he gave up seven hits, three walks and two strikeouts in 7 innings of work.

"Jerome did very well on the mound, but (Oswego East) manufactured a couple of runs and we only had two hits," Johnson said.

Oswego East notes: On Saturday, the Wolves defeated Eisenhower, 21-5, at home. Junior Matt Rohde and Dylan Jones each finished with three hits and three RBIs. Oswego East ended up with 14 hits and 14 RBIs.

Tuesday's game at Romeoville was postponed due to weather. No makeup date has been announced yet.

Oswego East was scheduled to resume conference action at Romeoville on Wednesday, but results were not available at press time. The series will wrap up today, Thursday, at Oswego East at 4:30 p.m. On Saturday, the Wolves are at Bolingbrook for a 10 a.m. game.

On Tuesday, the three-game series with Plainfield North begins at Silver Cross Field in Joliet at 4:30 p.m.

Oswego notes: The Panthers snapped the three-game losing streak on Friday, when they defeated West Aurora, 3-0, in a rescheduled game from March 20.

Oswego scored twice in the bottom of the third and once in the sixth. Turnquist earned the win on the mound after he gave up three walks, four hits and struck out six in all seven innings of work.

Sempetrean posted the lone RBI for the Panthers, Jakubowski had three hits and scored once, Rock posted two hits and both Wilson and junior Dominick Lukowski had a hit and scored a run.

West Chicago then defeated Oswego, 3-2, on Saturday. The Wildcats scored all three of their runs before the Panthers scored twice in the bottom of the fifth.

Jakubowski and Wilson posted an RBI each and Jakubowski had two of the Panthers' four total hits. Sempetrean was tagged with the tough loss after he gave up three hits and struck out six batters in five innings.

The game with Plainfield North on Tuesday was postponed due to the weather. The new date is Monday at 4:15 p.m.

The series with Plainfield North was scheduled to resume on Wednesday, but results were not available at press time. The series concludes today, Thursday, at Oswego at 4:15 p.m.

Saturday's home game against Marmion at 11 a.m. will feature the honoring of several Oswego locals and Tuesday's conference game at Romeoville will begin at 4:15 p.m.

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