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Trinity sports report

  • Written by Tim Cronin

Trolls softball most improved in league

  The goal all along for Trinity Christian College’s softball team was simple: finish in the top six and make the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament.
  Achieving it, however, wasn’t easy. The Trolls didn’t assure themselves of a playoff berth until the final game of the conference schedule, when they hung on for a 4-3 victory over the University of St. Francis to lock up fifth place with an 11-9 league record.
  The tourney begins today, with Trinity (23-23 overall) expected to face St. Xavier University (42-5-1) in the opener on the Cougars’ field. The championship game is Saturday, with the winner advancing to the NAIA Tournament.
  Just getting to the postseason is a big plus for the Trolls, who had won no more than 12 games in any of the past four seasons, which included last year’s 12-32 mark. Nearly doubling that total this year, and coming up only one short of it in conference play alone, marks Trinity as the most improved team in the conference and may earn coach Missy Bolhuis postseason plaudits.
  The road to the conference tournament reached the finish line last Thursday at the Route 83 Complex. The Trolls led 4-1, half of the offense coming from Bailan Reynolds’ two-RBI double in the bottom of the third, before USF mounted a two-out rally in the top of the seventh.
  Kiley Southall singled and scored when older sister Lexi doubled her home. Then Natalie Ward singled to bring in Lexi Southall, closing the gap to 4-3. The threat to Trinity’s success and its postseason berth ended when the Fighting Saints’ Tori Johnson made the final out.

Community sports news

Water polo athletes honor Caliendo

Members of the boys’ water polo teams at Sandburg and Andrew honored Jane Caliendo by wearing Warrior T-shirts created to support her battle with cancer during a match last week.
Caliendo is the wife of Eagles coach Jim Caliendo and has been involved herself with Sandburg’s swimming and water polo programs in the past. Eagles athletes have sold T-shirts and wristbands to raise money, and also performed charitable acts on the Caliendos’ behalf.

Palos Hills to host Pitch, Hit & Run competition
The Palos Hills Community Resource and Recreation Department will host a Pitch, Hit & Run competition for youngsters aged 7-14 on Wednesday from 2-4 p.m. at Glacier Park, 101st Street and 78th Avenue.
Participation is free. Registration is being accepted at the Palos Hills Community Center, 8455 W. 103rd St.
For more information, call 430-4500.

Goose egg turns golden

  • Written by Ken Karrson

After shutout loss, Vikings get back to business

Two days after getting hit with a string of goose eggs, St. Laurence cooked that goose.
The Vikings’ high-powered offense has often seemed unstoppable this spring, but De La Salle found a way to grind it to a halt last Thursday. Behind pitcher Ivan Guzman, the Meteors stunned St. Laurence — and probably a number of prep baseball fans — by notching a 4-0 shutout in a Chicago Catholic League crossover matchup.
The loss came right after the Vikings had crushed both St. Ignatius (12-0) and Fenwick (15-0) in two other league clashes, which simply added to its shocking nature.
“We’ve been playing a month and generating a lot of runs, but we told our guys, ‘It really isn’t going to be this easy all the time,’” St. Laurence coach Pete Lotus said. “I think not being in [many] close games hurt us on Thursday.”

Valpo means victory

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Knights remain unbeaten at college site

Chicago Christian ballplayers will go their separate ways after graduating high school, off to whichever colleges best fit their personal scholastic needs.
For those individuals who plan on staying involved with baseball at the next level, Valparaiso University might be a popular choice.
For sure, the Knights have enjoyed nothing but good luck on their annual pilgrimage to the Indiana school, a trip Christian coach Eric Brauer has arranged in each of his six seasons at the helm. That wasn’t the start of Brauer’s return to his collegiate alma mater, however — he also took his Michigan City Marquette team there on three occasions.
But while Marquette didn’t fare so well, the Knights certainly have. On Saturday, they racked up their sixth and seventh wins in a row at Valpo by capturing both ends of a doubleheader against Beecher.

Savoring a split decision

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Fabrizio’s boost gives RedHawks win over JCA

  Who says coaches can’t really impact games?
  Typically, that’s probably true, but there are exceptions. One of those occurred Saturday in Game 2 of an East Suburban Catholic Conference doubleheader between Marist and Joliet Catholic Academy.
  The Hilltoppers, who had taken the twinbill opener by a 6-1 score, were leading 2-0 in the second contest when the RedHawks appeared to break through in the sixth inning on John Carmody’s sacrifice fly. But another Marist runner was ruled to have departed second base prematurely and then called out when JCA threw back to the bag.
  Having already seen his club denied an earlier run when a RedHawk was called out at home despite kicking the ball loose from the catcher’s glove, Marist coach Tom Fabrizio wasn’t about to let this latest controversy pass without a confrontation.
  After telling the umpire involved with the play, “You cost us two runs,” and then getting him to confer with the other ump, Fabrizio was rewarded for his diligence. Carmody’s fly ball was indeed a run producer, and the RedHawks went on to tie the game on Barrett Callaghan’s single.
  Then in the seventh, sophomore Tommy Finwall broke the deadlock with a homer. Pitcher Rich Kairis protected that newly gained lead in the bottom of the stanza, and Marist was able to earn a split for the day with a 3-2 victory.