07/09/2016 4:44 PM -
Chicago Heights, Ill. – July 9, 2016 – On a perfect weather day at Hap Bruno Field, the Northwest Indiana Oilmen put the perfect ending on a perfect road swing.
The Oilmen capped off a 5-0 road trip with an exclamation mark by battering the Southland Vikings 16-0.
The game matched the 17-1 win over the Bobcats from earlier this season for the largest margin of victory in team history. In addition, it extended the Oilmen winning streak to a season-long five games.
“I like to see when guys don’t give away at-bats in a game like that,” Oilmen manager Adam Enright said. “It’s a little selfish, but it shows the competitive nature of our guys. They want to be the guy who’s leading the team in hitting or driving in runs. It’s great to have that competitive spirit in the dugout and on the team.”
Chase Dawson (Valparaiso / Chesterton, Ind.) collected five hits to match the franchise record for hits in a single game. He racked up five RBIs and finished the day 5-for-7.
Dawson became the first Oilmen player to turn in a five-hit game since the 2013 season when Nick Bartolone had five hits in a 15-inning game against DuPage and Jack Czeszewski notched five hits in a playoff game against Lexington.
Tommy Szczasny (Northern Illinois / Tinley Park, Ill.) continued to dominate by ripping three hits and reaching base in each of his first five plate appearances. Stefano Belmonte (Florida Gulf Coast / Munster, Ind.) had his fourth multi-hit game of the road trip by going 2-for-3.
Chris Baker (UIC / South Holland, Ill.) enjoyed his fourth three-hit game of the summer, while Marshawn Taylor, Josh Mutter, Chase Fieldhouse and Tyler Sroczynski had two hits apiece.
Oilmen starter Richard Yelnick (Trinity Christian / New Lenox, Ill.) needed only 56 pitches to cruise through four scoreless innings. He yielded four hits and walked two while striking out four before being taken out to allow him to pitch an inning in Tuesday’s MCL All-Star Game.
“I was hoping it wasn’t a close game where he would have to go five or six and wouldn’t be able to throw on two days of rest,” Enright said. “That’s good, because it’ll be good for him to pitch in that game.”
The Oilmen jumped on the board with three in the first before pouring on six in the third and four in the fourth. They added a run in the eighth and two more in the ninth. The Oilmen banged out 22 hits as a team, finishing one shy of the franchise record.
Southland starter Phil Madvek labored through three innings, allowing 12 runs (10 earned) on 14 hits and one walk. He suffered the loss to drop to 2-1.
Since Yelnick did not pitch the five innings required to qualify for the win, Luke Jaksich (St. Joseph’s College / St. John, Ind.) was awarded the victory for three scoreless innings of relief. He allowed one hit and walked one while improving his record to 3-0.
The Oilmen (20-15) will enjoy three straight off days for the All-Star Break. They are now just ½ game behind DuPage County for first place in the MCL. The Vikings (15-15) play a doubleheader against Bloomington on Sunday.
The 2016 Midwest Collegiate League All-Star Game will be held at Oil City Stadium on Tuesday at 7:20 p.m. Tickets are available now on NWIOilmen.com.