With Jake Tedlund noticeably absent, the Hounds secured an elusive win against the Norridge Orioles at Walther Christian Academy, taking the barnburner by a final score of 7-6. It was their second road victory over the Orioles and first since splitting a doubleheader in 2019.
Mike DiCola (#28) demanded the start and sizzled for the entire seven innings, holding the Birds to 6 hits, 6 runs, 0 walks, and an astonishing 0 home runs at the short-porched Lutheran diamond.
The Hounds drew first in the top of the first on a RBI single from Tim “Hot Hams” Riggenbach (#8, CF). In the third, Matt “Daddy” Burch (#6, EH) tacked an additional run on the board, batting in a run on a deep left field line drive, fulfilling a promise he made to his “terminally ill” uncle (whose health status was greatly falsified to attain a spot in the starting lineup). In the bottom half of that frame, the Orioles responded by stringing together two doubles and a single to score 3 and swipe the lead. Tatting, the Hounds immediately tied the game thanks to a smash double by Tony Correa (#13, C/EH) and RBI groundout by Max Kiefer (#99, 1B). The Oriole half-inning started with some sloppy defensive play on a mouthy lead-off bunt, followed by a HBP and double for 2 runs. Punctuating the inning, Greg Sells (#19, SS) caught the second base runner leaning on a groundout, nullifying the lead runner on a great heads-up fielder’s choice. The batter reaching on the FC did eventually score, however, on a gutsy sprint from third on an infield-in 6-3 ground out, giving the Orioles a 6-3 advantage heading into the 6th inning. Never deterred, the Doggos began the next frame on a blast double by Sells and followed it up with singles each by Kruse, Riggenbach, and Nick Schmidt (#23, DH) to tie the game. Correa, Zelenka (#21, 2B), and Kiefer then exercised patience to force in the go-ahead run. DiCola would collect himself and deliver a 1-2-3 sixth and a 1-2-3-4 seventh, with Kruse “closing” by squeezing a liner at 3B with a runner on second for the final out.
Available teammates attempted to re-visit Old Town Tavern, but were surprised to find out they’re closed on Sundays in June (for renovations). Never deterred, the Hounds gathered at Russel’s Barbecue for post-game meal and suds.
The Hounds escaped the week’s 5 game sprint with 3 wins and 2 loses improving their record to 6-7. After some much needed rest, they will take on the Electrons for the first time since 2019 on Thursday at Winnemac