Baseball: Keeley, Waubonsie Valley quiet DeKalb's bats
There were no late-inning heroics for the DeKalb baseball team Tuesday, 24 hours after a nail-biting, extra-inning victory against Waubonsie Valley.
Game 2 of the DuPage Valley Conference series saw the Warriors score six runs in the fifth, more than enough support for starting pitcher Jake Keeley in an 11-0, six-inning win.
"It was an absolutely horrible game," DeKalb coach Josh Latimer said. "From top to bottom today was absolutely pathetic. We just didn't play well. We didn't play well defensively, we didn't play well offensively. We got a couple guys in the middle of our lineup in slumps right now, which is never a good thing."
The Barbs (12-7-1, 3-5 DVC) managed two hits in the loss a day after pounding out 14 in an 8-5, eight-inning win, coming back from 4-1 down in the seventh.
They also had a scary moment in the fifth when reliever Carson Smith chased down a ball that lined off his glove and landed behind him. As he went to pivot and throw, he fell to the ground. An ambulance came and he left on a stretcher.
Latimer said Smith likely suffered a knee injury, but his long-term status remained uncertain postgame. Latimer said Smith was smiling toward the end.
"We lost another family member today, but hopefully not for too long," Latimer said. "We're going to find out what goes on with Carson."
Smith had come on in relief of Brodie Farrell, who allowed four runs, three earned, in four innings. Smith allowed four runs, all unearned. Jack Ager allowed the final two runs.
Meanwhile, Keeley walked two, struck out four and allowed two hits for the Warriors (6-13, 2-6). Only four balls left the infield all day.
"We played great, defense played well behind me," Keeley said. "It's easy to throw strikes when you know the boys behind you are going to pick up the grounders."
The Warriors pounded out 17 hits in the win. Hiroshy Wong and Blake Pietryk had three hits each, with Wong scoring three times and driving in three runs from the leadoff spot. Mason Ringenbach, Josh Hung, Owen Roberts and Luke Farley had two hits each.
"The boys were motivated even more after blowing the lead in the seventh inning," Keeley said. "We came out played like we knew we could."
Farrell and Nik Nelson had the hits for the Barbs. After Nelson singled in the third, Keeley retired 11 of the last 12 DeKalb batters, the only blemish a sixth-inning walk to Nelson.
"Jake did a nice job on the mound for us today," Waubonsie Valley coach Ryne Gill said. "He threw series, got ahead of hitters. He really kind of kept them off balance. He made our job a little easier on the defensive side, worked fast and threw strikes."
One of these two teams will pick up its first DVC series win Thursday when the series shifts back to Aurora.
"The guys are going to figure it out right now," Latimer said. "I left them with a little speech, told them it was something they need to figure out. They're going to bounce back; they're going to come together. This is the family we talk about, and they'll figure out a way."