By Drake Skleba
For the Bugle 

Mustangs crush Hinsdale South again; Look for WSC Gold series sweep on Saturday


Last updated 4/30/2021 at 10:51pm

Downers Grove South senior Matt Scolan is seeing the baseball very well - thank you.

With his Mustangs leading 12-3 over arch rival Hinsdale South, in the bottom of the sixth, Scolan stepped up to the plate. On first base was Mustang senior Richie Pecenka, who's two-RBI single made it 12-3 Mustangs.

Scolan, who had hit for the cycle in Thursday's Mustangs 10-0 win at Hinsdale South, had a double and a triple in Friday's game.

Add a walk-off RBI double to his batting log, scoring Pecenka and giving the Mustangs the 13-3 slaughter-rule victory in six innings.

"I went up to the plate looking to hit the ball hard somewhere and drive in the winning run," Scolan said. "I am seeing the ball very, very well. We are all hitting the ball well and go for the sweep tomorrow at Hinsdale South."

The game itself wasn't much to talk about, as both teams played poorly on defense,

Hinsdale South (2-2, 1-2) committed eight errors and eight of the thirteen Downers Grove South (8-1, 7-1) runs were unearned. The Mustangs committed three errors and gave away one unearned run for starting, and winning pitcher, junior Luke Costello.

Costello (2-0) allowed just three hits and two earned runs in his five game-winning innings. Costello struck out five and walked three.

With the Mustangs ahead 4-3 in the bottom of the third inning, junior Maxx Palenik (2-for-4, 2RBI) ripped a clutch two-run single to left to put the 'Stangs up 6-3. They extended their lead to 7-3, scoring on a wild pitch and at the end of three innings.

In the top of the fourth, Hornet senior Jake Jones hit a flare to right. Out of nowhere came the diving Palenik to make the web gem of a catch.

'We all hit the ball so well today," Palenik said. "I got a great read on the ball hit to me in the top of the fourth, which allowed me to make the catch."

"Maxx (Palenik) was one of the main reasons we won this game today," Downers Grove South coach Darren Orel. "First with his big two-run single to extend our lead to 6-3 and then with his great catch in the top of the fourth.

Senior Joe Cosenza had a perfect day at the plate for the Mustangs with three singles and a base on balls.

Senior Cole Warehime had an RBI double and a single, while senior Mike Bucher had an RBI double for the 'Stangs.

On Saturday morning, the Mustangs will go for the sweep in Darien, riding the arm of right-hander Noah Edders (1-0). Edders last pitched in the Mustangs' season-opening 7-0 win over Willowbrook on April 13. Edders allowed just one hit in his five innings of work with 10 strikeouts and no walks.

"This was a very poorly played game on defense by both teams," Orel added. "Neither team could make the routine defensive play. We were fortunate to have great at bats and were able to hit and take advantage of the Hinsdale South mistakes. We have to improve on defense or we will not win.

"What can you say about Matt Scolan. The ball must look like a big, beach ball to Matt right now."


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