Waubonsie Valley's Tyler Hasper delivers a pitch. | Jon Langham/For Sun-Times Media
Waubonsie Valley’s pitching has been fantastic all season, but perhaps most impressive is the Warriors’ relief effort in extra innings.
Nick Drago, Jack Eddy, Tyler Hasper, Ryan Jones and Brandon Petersen have all pitched in the team’s five extra-inning games and they haven’t allowed a run.
The Warriors are 3-0-2 in extra-inning games, going 11 against Metea Valley and 13 against Batavia in games that were never resumed.
Waubonsie’s pitching has thrown 19 innings after the seventh, allowing only five hits while striking out 16.
That effort was needed most in the Class 4A Plainfield Central Regional semifinal against Plainfield East last Wednesday and Thursday. After playing until dark Wednesday, the Warriors needed just 11 minutes Thursday to get the walkoff win thanks to Drew Ellam’s hit.
Winless juniors aren’t supposed to compose themselves and dominate a regional championship, but Neuqua Valley’s Tyler Bromer did just that.
Pitching more than three innings in a game for the first time since April 26, Bromer went six Saturday against Naperville Central, allowing five hits and two runs for his first career victory. Talk about an unforgettable moment.
“All week I was so nervous and freaking out,” Bromer said. “Everyone on the team told me they trusted and believed in me and that lifted all the weight off of my shoulders.”
Rivalry games are called that for a reason. That certainly was the case between Naperville North and Naperville Central, whose four games were all decided by a single run, including a 12-inning opener and then a walk-off game in a regional semifinal. Each team won twice.
Naperville North senior Kurt Krejci took the loss in the Class 4A Metea Valley Regional semifinal.
“We knew it was going to be close the entire game,” he said. “I thought we had it after the first couple innings, but it just didn’t go for us.”
Benet (24-9-1) lost 8-4 to the host Friars in Saturday’s 3A Fenwick Regional championship game. The Redwings were shooting for their first regional title since 2008.
It was a rough way for the Redwings to see their season end, especially since they had won nine of 10 coming into play.
The Redwings were tied at 4-4 with the Friars before surrendering four runs in the top of the seventh.
The team will lose 13 players to graduation, including Chris Whelan (Bradley), Pat Peterson (Dartmouth) and Joe Boyle (Northern Illinois).
Been there, done that
On Saturday, Neuqua Valley (18-16-2) won its fourth consecutive regional title and its ninth in 12 years, while Waubonsie Valley (26-8-2) ended its drought, capturing its first title since 2005.
If the Warriors can beat Downers Grove South and the Wildcats can take care of Plainfield North, both on Wednesday at Oswego, the two will meet for a sectional title on Saturday morning at Oswego.
Waubonsie Valley won the season series against Neuqua Valley, 2-1.
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