Bartlett center fielder Mike Wick had a great view of the strong 6 innings teammate Alex Curtis pitched against Streamwood in Thursday's 8-1 Upstate Eight crossover win.
"He was humming," assured Wick, the team's fleet-footed center fielder. "He was just throwing strikes, which is all we ask him to do, and he was getting outs for us."
One day after ace Doug VanDyke threw 5 solid innings in a win over Elgin, Curtis pitched Bartlett (4-4, 3-2) to its second straight win. The 6-foot-6, 210-pound right-hander limited Streamwood (4-6, 2-3) to 1 unearned run on 3 hits in 6 innings. He struck out seven and walked two.
"I just focused on keeping (the ball) down," said Curtis (1-1). "I tried to limit deep flyballs and line drives by working off speed, trying to get them off balance."
Curtis delivered a first-pitch strike to 16 of the 25 batters he faced.
'We were 0-1 the entire game it felt like," Streamwood coach Ryan LaSota said. "He pumped the fastball over, then he had us off-balance with the off speed and we were up there guessing at that point. I was hoping we'd jump on the fastball a little better than we did. Our hitting approach wasn't the best."
The Sabres were coming off an emotional victory over West Chicago on Wednesday, when they rallied from a 5-0 deficit. Against Bartlett they again fell behind 5-0, but there were no late heroics this time.
Bartlett's 5-run third inning against Sabres starting pitcher Kevin Sojda (1-2) was ignited by a Streamwood infield error and a bunt single by No. 9 hitter Myle Zilinsky, his second well-placed bunt hit in as many days.
Wick -- who hit .375 last season -- then delivered a line-drive single up the middle, scoring Tripp Paris for a 1-0 lead.
"Fastball. Right down the middle. Sweet spot. It was right there," said Wick, now hitting .444 (11 of 25). "We were just looking fastball or best pitch to hit and just drive it. We were pretty successful putting some runs up on the board."
Jake Barrutia followed with a run-scoring groundball that made it 2-0, and another run scored on the play due to a wild throw to first base. Jordan Flint's RBI single made it 4-0. Bartlett scored its fifth run when a popup off the bat of designated hitter Joey Roberson fell untouched between three Sabres in shallow left-center field.
Streamwood scored its only run against Curtis in the fifth. Senior Zach Pisarek reached second base on a Bartlett throwing error. He laster scored, thanks to 2 wild pitches.
Bartlett added 3 insurance runs in the fifth, courtesy of senior third baseman Trevor Svetic's 2-run triple and a sacrifice fly by Roberson.
Senior Joe Belford pitched a scoreless seventh inning to seal Bartlett's second straight win.