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Huntley defeats Glenbard West in first annual “Senior Day” game

Raiders celebrating (M. Makowski)

On Saturday, Huntley varsity baseball snagged its fifth victory in a row with a close 6-5 win over Glenbard West.

Click here to view the game photo gallery

The Hilltoppers went ahead early on in the game with an RBI single off of Huntley pitcher Jon Vazquez in the top of the first.  However the Raiders struck back in the bottom of the inning when second baseman Brody Burkhart laced a single to right field to score Jordan Chuipek, who led off the half with a walk.

“We came up with timely hitting early in the game,” said head coach Andy Jakubowski.  “We did a real good job with situational hitting and getting our bunts down.”

After a quick second inning, Glenbard West put a pair of runs on the board with an RBI double by center fielder Ryan Kavanaugh and a deep sacrifice fly by catcher Mark Terwilliger.

Huntley came back in the bottom of the third with two runs scored on throwing errors.  After Christian Heustis tripled in a run to take a 4-3 lead, pinch runner Jake Wagner scored on a wild pitch.

But Glenbard West didn’t go down without a fight.

After the Raiders tacked on an insurance run in the bottom of the fourth, the Hilltoppers fought back by scoring a pair of runs on Huntley errors.  The Raiders tiptoed out of the inning after pitcher Justin Gundlach forced a pop-out with the tying run in scoring position.

“I thought our pitchers threw very well today [but] defensively, we struggled,” said Jakubowski, whose team committed three errors.

Senior pitcher Jake Perkins came in for Huntley after an easy sixth inning for the save.  He earned his fifth save of the season by punching out Tyler Curtis with the potential game-tying run on second base.

“It was huge,” said Jakubowski.  “That’s what Perkins does.  He comes in, spot-starts, and closes the door for us.  There’s nobody who does it better than him.”

The Raiders are now looking to prepare for their first regional game, which take place next Wednesday.

“We just need to continue to work on what we’re doing,” he said.  “Our pitchers are going to come in and throw strikes so as long as we don’t hurt ourselves, we’re going to be in a good position.”

The game was the team’s first annual “Senior Day,” which was organized to honor all seniors who were playing their last home game in high school.  Parents and volunteers put together a cook-out for both teams after the game.

Click here to view the pregame events photo gallery

“The juniors and sophomores all got together and wanted to do something nice as a send-off,” said Jakubowski.  “The parents all got together and got on board.  It was a real nice day today.”

Click here to view the post-game cookout photo gallery

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Marek Makowski, Author

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