Baseball: Title game against Barrington final MSL stop for Elk Grove's Beyna
There will be a couple of familiar faces in the Mid-Suburban League baseball championship game. But one of those faces will be making his final stop in the title game.
Barrington (26-6, 13-3), will represent the West and will play at East champion Elk Grove (16-9, 13-3) Thursday at 4:45 p.m.
It will be the fourth time in the last six years that Elk Grove has represented the East. The Grenadiers have won those three previous approaches, with two of those wins coming against Barrington.
It will also be the final title game for Elk Grove coach Terry Beyna, who is retiring as head coach after 20 seasons at the conclusion of the season.
"I am approaching this with mixed feelings," said Beyna, who has compiled a record of 347-320-1. "I have a fifth-grade daughter and fourth-grade son who play softball and baseball. To step back is the right thing for them."
Beyna is excited to be exiting with an opportunity to win another MSL title. He is undefeated in four previous attempts, winning in 2006 against Palatine, in 2014 against Schaumburg and in 2015 and 2016 against Barrington.
"To be able to be in the game and host the game is really special," Beyna said. "I am really proud of this team. It is a not a large team and every guy on it makes every other player feel special. They are a fun group to be around."
Barrington has won or shared the MSL West for the past seven seasons, all under head coach Pat Wire. The Broncos will be making their sixth appearance in the title game during that span.
The two MSL title losses that Barrington suffered to Elk Grove were with Christian Camacho on the mound for the Grens.
"As long as Camacho does not show up and pitch, I feel much better," said Wire, who is 176-65-2 in his career. "Everyone tries to remind us of our lack of MSL or regional championships, but the reality is that each group is different. And this group is trying to figure out its own destiny."
The teams met just a couple weeks ago with Barrington winning 7-0. RJ Nowicki, who was MSL West Player of the Year, was on the mound for the Broncos and allowed just 3 hits.
Nowicki, who has verbally committed to Northern Illinois, pitched on Monday and will not be available for the game if it is played on Thursday due to pitch count rules.
But that doesn't mean it won't be an outstanding pitching matchup.
Barrington will send Nate Holler to the mound to start. The right-handed junior has been a varsity starter for two seasons. This year he is 8-0 with an ERA of 4.74 with 69 strikeouts in just over 44 innings pitched.
Elk Grove will counter with its huge lefty Ryne Singsank, who was named MSL East Player of the Year. The 6-foot-7 Southern Illinois commit is 7-1 this year. He has an ERA of 1.23 and has fanned 74 in just over 45 innings.
With those two hard throwers on the hill, hits and runs could be at a premium.
Elk Grove, which is led offensively by Singsank, Zach Schwartz, Shane Crimmins, Josh Periaswamy, Xander Rojahn, Joey Gaskill, Mark Matos and Nick Hofmann, is hitting .280 as a team, but has just 4 home runs.
Barrington has been a bit more successful at the plate. The Broncos, led by Michigan-commit Clark Elliott along with Rayth Peterson, Will Koehler, Max Raynor, AJ Christoffer, Jon Gardner, John Seagrist and Nate Ganda, have hit .325 thus season with 14 home runs.
Wire reminded the adage about baseball.
"Good pitching, can stifle good hitting," he said.