Baseball

High school baseball: Johnsburg uses early runs, solid pitching to top Woodstock North

Dillon Pokuta
Dillon Pokuta

JOHNSBURG – Trailing 2-0 in the second inning, Woodstock North loaded the bases on three walks by Johnsburg starting pitcher Chris Krennrich.

What the Thunder didn’t realize at that time, was that not only was this their best chance to do some damage against the Johnsburg ace, it would also be the last base runner they would get off Krennrich.

Behind a well pitched game by Krennrich and just enough offense, Johnsburg went on to defeat Woodstock North, 4-1, in a Kishwaukee River Conference game held at Tigers Field in Johnsburg.

Krennrich allowed a bloop single to Thunder third basemen Zach Johnson with one out in the first inning and the walks in the second inning. After that, the southpaw settled in to retire the last 13 batters he faced and finished with 12 strikeouts. The senior struck out two Thunder batters in each inning he pitched.

“I just really tried to get ahead in each count and let my defense make the plays,” Krennrich said. “I just want to give us a good chance to win and today I was able to do that.”

Johnsburg (16-13, 13-3 KRC) had its best inning at the plate in the first. Krennrich and Ryan Kordik walked, and with two outs Dillon Pokuta drove them in with a triple to give Johnsburg the 2-0 lead. The Skyhawks had their chance to blow the game open in the third inning, but Thunder starter Dain Glaves was able to pitch out of it.

Glaves settled in after the two-run first inning and allowed just three hits in his four innings of work.

The Skyhawks did increase the lead late with RBI doubles by Adam Jayko in the fifth and Krennrich in the sixth. Jayko was the only Johnsburg batter with two hits, while Krennrich finished with three walks and the double.

“We didn’t really play that well today, but did enough to win the game,” Johnsburg coach Sam Lesniak said. “We didn’t have many good approaches at the plate and had a lot of missed opportunites. Chris [Krennrich] was outstanding today and the defense made plays. We just need work on our approach at the plate and take advantage of base runners.”

Woodstock North (15-12, 9-7) was able to get on the scoreboard in the seventh inning when Colin Ritter scored an unearned run on a single by Jacob Glaves.

“We’ve had the same problem the past few weeks, getting that big hit when we needed it most,” Woodstock North coach John Oslovich said. “Both sides pitched well today. They got the hits when they needed them and we didn’t and that is really what decided the game today.”

UNSUNG HERO

Dillon Pokuta

Johnsburg, Sr., 2B

Pokuta hit a two-run triple in the first inning, which proved to be all the offense Johnsburg would need.

THE NUMBER

2: Total hits allowed by Johnsburg pitchers Chris Krennrich and Aidan Stark, a single in the first inning and an infield single in the seventh inning.

AND ANOTHER THING... 

Woodstock North relief pitcher Quintin Fiala kept the game close in the fifth inning. Fiala struck out two Skyhawk batters with the bases loaded to keep the score 3-0.

Johnsburg 4, Woodstock North 1

Woodstock North 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 — 1  2 0

Johnsburg 2 00 0 1 1 x — 4  6  2

WP-Krennrich (6IP,1H,0R,0ER,3BB,12K). LP- D.Glaves (4IP,3H,2R,2ER,3BB,1K).

Top Hitters: Woodstock North-J. Glaves 1-1 (RBI), Johnson1-3, Ritter 0-1 (R, 2BB). Johnsburg-Krennrich 1-1 (3BB, 2B,RBI), Jayko 2-4 (2B,RBI), Pokuta 1-2 (3B, 2RBI, BB), Frazier 1-3, N. Alanis 1-4 (R).

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