Buffalo Grove's Sophs Start at 10-3 Rolling Meadows Freshmen Look Sharp with 7-3 Performance

Article excerpt

Buffalo Grove's sophomore baseball team got off to a strong start with a 7-0 win against Elk Grove.

The Bison's pitching staff did not allow any hits during the 7-inning game.

Jeff Pink (13 strikeouts, 7 walks) pitched six innings, and Jordan Nichols (1 strikeout, 1 walk) pitched the last inning in the win that helped the team get out to a 2-0 start in the Mid-Suburban East and a 10-3 overall record.

"We are pitching real well," said coach Norm Hillner.

Pink (3-0, 24 innings, .029 ERA, 38 strikeouts) and Tim Jensen (2-1) lead the pitching staff that includes Bob Sajdak, Joe Saviano (1 victory, 1 save), Jason Shearn and Matt Weber.

The pitchers are getting defensive support from Saviano, at second; Jason Cutler, at third; Shearn, as catcher; Ryan Baum and Trevor Kahn in the outfield.

Dan Solley (.500 in 14 at-bats) has the highest average, but regular players Pink (.405), Sajdak (.363), Rob Forshall (.324), Shearn (.316) and Dan Love (.310) are also consistent hitters.

Pink (15 RBI), Love (11) and Shearn (13), the 3-4-5 hitters, have the most runs.

Steve Hardy is getting on base as leadoff and has 10 stolen bases.

Freshmen. The future is looking bright for the Bison freshmen (8-5, 1-1 in the East) because they are highly competitive. They lost one game late to Hersey but beat Elk Grove.

One reason for the Bison's success is a crop of left-handed pitchers.

"We have seven guys who can go," said coach Brian Biernacki. "Four of them are lefties."

Jason James (3-0), who has 25 strikeouts and 3 walks, Mike Petrie (3-1), Brett Carroll (1-1) lead the group. They are getting good support from the defense, including Nick Gord, at shortstop; Brian Mucha, at third; Tim Macasek, at second; Eric Crost, in center; and Dan Maro behind the plate.

Crost (.400), who has 2 homers and 4 doubles, leads the team with 15 RBI.

Maro (.450), Mucha (.380) and James (.380) are leading the hitters.

Greg Skyles, Steve Brown and J.R. Salinas in several other positions also are chipping in.

-Jeff Clarkson

Rolling Meadows

If the pre-Mid-Suburban East Division season is an indication, Rolling Meadows' freshman team could do well in the division.

The Mustangs are 7-3, 1-0 with a victory over Prospect.

"We are right on track where we want to be," said coach Ken Cooper. "I am happy they are learning much more about the game. We hope to have an opportunity to compete for the conference championship."

Ray Navarro (2-0, 1-0 in the East), Ryan Bartholomea (3-1) and Greg Neves (2-1) help make up the formidable pitching staff.

Strong fielders include Navarro at shortstop, Kevin Bartholomea at first, Ryan Lettieri at shortstop or third and Neves at third.

Lettieri and the three pitchers also are solid hitters.

Sophomores. Despite a slow start (2-8), the Mustang sophomores are improving.

The Mustangs are 1-2 in the East Division, beating Prospect but losing to Buffalo Grove and Wheeling.

"We are starting to come along a little," said Mark Thorne. "We are playing better ball in conference. Our pitching is starting to tighten up, and our defense is starting to make progress."

Palla, Joe Wright and Peter Strass all are sharpening their skills on the mound. Brian Mule also has had a couple of good stints.

The defense also is making strides with Ryan Buchanan and Ryan Fosco; Strass, at third base; D.J. Brown, at second; David Brach, at shortstop.

Nick Niggliazzo, Wright and Bobby McNamara are swinging their bats better. John Giacolone and Matt Pfeffer also are contributing to the team.

-Jeff Clarkson

Wheeling

The Wheeling sophomores improved their record to 8-6 with a 13-3 win over Rolling Meadows as Mark Kirchner earned the win.

Making his first start after being promoted to the team, freshman right fielder Matt Wilson had a big impact with a couple of hits and some stolen bases. …