DEERFIELD, Ill–You would have to go all the way back to the month of April to find when the Lake Forest Scouts varsity baseball team last had immense struggles on offense. Since their epic comeback started on the 24th, the Scouts have hit .325 at the plate as a team with a .412 on base percentage. On top of that, they were averaging over eight runs a game. Their productivity at the plate, however, came to a screeching halt when they took on Ethan Wolf and the Deerfield Warriors. The Lake Forest Scouts fell just short in what was a tight, defensive-oriented game that came all the way down to the wire.
While Ethan Wolf was fooling Scouts batters left and right, Connor Morrison was doing his part by keeping the game tied up at zero. In the first four innings of the game, Morrison only allowed one hit and struck out four batters. Meanwhile, Lake Forest still didn’t have a hit, and Ryan Lee was the only Scout to get on base on a walk. Things finally changed in the top of the fifth as both offense’s came alive.
In the top of the fifth, with Wolf still dealing on the bump, Peter Turelli doubled to right field on the first pitch that he saw putting a runner in scoring position for the first time Friday evening. Then with two outs, Will Davis picked up the Scouts lone RBI of the night on a single to left field. Deerfield however immediately had an answer.
In the bottom half of the inning, Morrison ran into some trouble. After giving up a leadoff walk to David Bartok, the Warriors first basemen advanced all the way to third after a groundout and a wild pitch. With one out, Aaron DeLisle’s single to center easily scored Bartok, tying the game up at one. Morrison managed to get out of the 5th, but ran into more trouble in the beginning of the 6th.
After Wolf held the Scouts scoreless in the top half of the inning, Deerfield had another chance to take their first lead of the night. Ben Sodikoff drew a leadoff walk, then stole second in the Warriors next at-bat getting into scoring position with no outs. In that same at-bat, Lucas Danielewicz’s line drive hit up the middle was deep enough to score Sodikoff granting Deerfield the one run lead. At that point, Lake Forest closer Will Woidat came in and managed to get the Scouts out of the inning without any further harm.
In the top of the seventh, Wolf once again fooled the Scouts batters striking out two and forcing Lee to fly out to first ending the game. Deerfield went on to win 2-1 improving their impressive record to 20-9 and extending their imposing win streak to twelve.
The Lake Forest Scouts defense was borderline perfect Friday evening. Connor Morrison pitched a phenomenal game, and the players behind him did not commit a single error. As you would expect in a game that only featured a combined three runs, the fault lies on the Lake Forest offense. The Scouts only had two hits, both of which came in the fifth, and as a team struck out ten times. Ethan Wolf deserves a lot of credit. He pitched all seven innings for a complete game. His ERA is now at 2.33 and he is 3-1 on the season. The following morning, the Lake Forest Scouts varsity baseball team took on Glenbrook South on Senior Day. You can check out the full recap of that game in the In Between the Lines Section exclusively on The Forest Scout.
LAKE FOREST, Ill.–To say the least, a lot has changed since the Lake Forest Scouts first home game of the season back on April 5 against Stevenson. Saturday morning, the Scouts put a cap on what has been a remarkable, up and down year. Every senior got a chance to play against 13-19 Glenbrook South as Lake Forest took down the Titans in a game that was a nail-biter from start to finish.
After starting pitcher Jackson Thomas cruised through the top of the first, Lake Forest jumped on Glenbrook South immediately in the bottom half of the inning. Per usual, Caleb Durbin got the Scouts started with a double to left field, which was his tenth of the season. In the next at-bat, JR Naughton drove in Durbin on a single to left field. Titans starter John Borth got through the first without allowing another run despite loading the bases after back-to-back walks.
In the bottom of the second, the Scouts seniors got right back to work. With two men on and two out, Naughton scored Colin McDonnell on an error committed by Glenbrook South second basemen Brian O’Conner. Despite being down early, the Titans weren’t going anywhere and cut into the Scouts lead in the top of the third.
Glenbrook South cut their deficit to one without getting a hit in the inning. O’Conner, who reached on a walk to start the inning, made it all the way into scoring position after stealing second and advancing to third on Mike Angel’s groundout. Then, with two outs, Jack Anderson hit a sharp ground ball to third baseman Matt Hill, who managed to knock the ball down, but was unable to recover and get the ball to first in time for the out. O’Conner ended up scoring cutting the Lake Forest lead in half. Jackson Thomas and the Scouts got out of the inning without any further damage being assessed partially in thanks to catcher David Tanna nabbing Anderson on the basepaths trying to steal second.
Lake Forest had an answer in the bottom of the third. After David Tanna and Collin McDonnell drew back-to-back walks, Ryan Lee’s single to left field scored Tanna, extending the Scouts lead back to two. The Titans however kept sticking around. Every time it looked like Lake Forest might break free and pull away, Glenbrook South had an answer.
With two outs in the top of the 4th, Connor Nash gave the Titans some life with a double to center field. Drew Golde, who took over as pitcher at the beginning of the inning, was looking to escape without allowing a run. On a 1-2 count, Glenbrook South batter John Miskella sent a line drive to center field. Ryan Lee made a diving effort to catch the ball and end the inning, but it went off the tip of his glove and trickled behind him deep into the outfield. Nash easily scored and Miskella ended up at second. The Titans had momentum and looked to even things up in the fifth.
After the Lake Forest Scouts left the bases loaded in the bottom of the 4th, Glenbrook South proceeded to tie the game at three in the 5th looking to spoil the Scouts senior day. With O’Conner in scoring position again, Mike Angel’s double to right field tied the game at three. The Titans had a chance to keep things tied going into the 6th, but a costly error didn’t only cost them a chance at snagging the lead, but also the game.
With men on second and third with two outs, Drew Golde had a big chance to break the game open with either a double or a single. Instead, he hit what seemed like a routine ground ball to the Glenbrook South first basemen, who could not control the ball. By the time he got back to the bag, Golde reached safely, and Collin McDonnell came home to score. Still with two outs, Andrew Gough hit a line drive single to center field easily scoring Caleb Durbin giving Lake Forest their two run lead right back.
Glenbrook South had a few chances down the stretch to come back and tie the game, but the Scouts defense prevented that from happening. In the top of the 6th, a phenomenal play by Matt Hill at third and a tremendous short hop scoop at first from Jackson Thomas left a Titan stranded at third. Then, in the top of the seventh, Scouts closer Will Woidat shut down Glenbrook South giving Lake Forest a 5-4 victory on senior day.
By all means, this was not a clean game by the Scouts. The defense wasn’t as sharp as it could have been, and the Scouts struck out eight times, but a win is a win, and most importantly, all the seniors got to play. Colin McDonnell was the player of the game with two hits and a shutout inning on the bump. The Lake Forest Scouts varsity baseball team will open playoff play this evening at varsity field against the Waukegan Bulldogs, a team they swept less than a week ago. Stay tuned to The Forest Scout for the latest on Scouts baseball.