Shutdowns of Loyola top Crusaders’ week
The record shows that Brother Rice broke even last week.
Convincing Loyola Academy players the Crusaders were only average might be a difficult task, however.
For sure, the Ramblers saw Rice at its best, particularly last Wednesday, when it rode Mike Enriquez’s superb pitching to a slaughter-rule win in Wilmette. The Crusaders’ offense wasn’t too shabby, either, as it pounded out 10 hits, six of which — as well as seven combined RBI — were supplied by Andrew Dyke and Kevin Biondic. Behind that assault, Rice was able to pin a 10-0 defeat on Loyola.
But an even bigger story was Enriquez’s mastery on the hill. The senior had a no-hitter through 4 2/3 innings before getting touched for a single, the Ramblers’ lone hit on the afternoon. Enriquez did walk three, but those mattered little as he also struck out six men and was backed by a flawless Crusaders defense.
Rice coach John McCarthy appreciated Enriquez’s effort, particularly since it came on the heels of the Crusaders’ second Chicago Catholic League Blue loss to Mt. Carmel in a three-day span.
“That was exactly what we needed to keep us in the Catholic League Blue hunt,” McCarthy said. “To do that, you’ve got to win games, and he put a stop to the losing streak. That was what we wanted from a senior pitcher.”