Some big hits did occur Saturday afternoon at Waubonsie Valley, but the Warriors beat Wheaton Warrenville South 4-3 courtesy some outstanding pitching of Troy Fumagalli and the ability to take advantage of some smaller opportunities.
Waubonsie Valley (6-5) came back from a 3-1 deficit with 2 runs in the fourth and 1 in the fifth, and Fumagalli went the distance, striking out a season-high 14 and moving his record to 2-2.
"This feels good. If we match our potential, we can be a very good team," said Fumagalli, who allowed 6 hits but only 1 over the last three innings. "From inning to inning, my pitches switched on and off, like my changeup. But during the innings I got two or three strikeouts, I did a good job of locating my pitches."
The winning run came in the bottom of the fifth. Catcher Luke Marzano led off with a walk, and Nikos Varvarezos ran for him and moved to second on Jake Bennema's sacrifice bunt, and to third on C.J. Lee's groundout. A passed ball brought Marzano home.
The inning before, the Warriors scored twice to tie the game. Drew Ellam led off with a single to center followed by Ben Vietri's single to left. Each moved up a base when Tyler Hasper was hit by a pitch. Then a fielding error scored Ellam. Alex Tazic's groundball turned into an attempted double play that resulted in a fielder's choice at second, allowing Vietri to tie the game.
After the Tigers (8-4) took a 2-0 lead in their half of the second, Waubonsie reached the scoreboard when Hasper led off with a double to left and was brought home on Tazic's double-play ball.
The Warriors climbed above .500 for the first time this season. It was their third straight win.
"After the first inning, Troy got better and that's what you expect from a senior leader," said Warriors coach Dan Fezzuoglio. "I give credit to the boys for sticking with it. Sometimes when we've been down, we lose our sense of trying to compete. It's good to see them get a win against a solid team like Wheaton Warrenville South."
The Tigers got two extra-base hits and converted both into runs. WW South scored first when the game's first hitter, Eric Giltz, nailed a single to center, stole second made it home on Matt Walsh's single to right.
The first big WW South hit came in the second when Kevin Giltz tripled to right and scored on a fielding error. The final Tigers run came in the fourth; Zack Moberg doubled to left-center and later stole home on a double-steal, with Eric Giltz safe at second.
"Their pitcher did a nice job, but we couldn't put the ball in play," said WW South coach Tim Brylka.
The Tigers had won four staight going into the contest.
"We've had good pitching and been swinging the bat a little better up and down the lineup,"Brylka said. "Guys are contributing."