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Warriors top fifth grade CYO girls volleyball team

Pictured at Andrean High School in Merrillville are the 2018-2019 Catholic Youth Organization 5th grade girls volleyball champions from St. Michael of Schererville. The Warriors defeated the St. John the Baptist Trojans 21-13 and 21-9 to claim the title (photo provided). 

Trojans girls earn CYO 6th grade volleyball crown

Pictured at Andrean High School in Merrillville are the 2018-2019 Catholic Youth Organization 6th grade girls volleyball champions from St. John the Baptist of Whiting. The Trojans defeated the St. John the Evangelist Eagles 21-14 and 21-18 to claim the title (photo provided). 

 

Wildcats pounce to CYO girls volleyball title

Pictured at Andrean High School in Merrillville are the 2018-2019 Catholic Youth Organization 7th grade girls volleyball champions from St. Mary of Crown Point. The Wildcats defeated the St. Thomas More Warriors of Munster 25-24 and 25-15 to claim the title (photo provided). 

 

 

St. Mike's claims 8th grade CYO girls volleyball championship

Pictured at Andrean High School in Merrillville are the 2018-2019 Catholic Youth Organization 8th grade girls volleyball champions from St. Michael of Schererville. The Warriors defeated the St. Thomas More Warriors of Munster 25-20 and 25-21 to claim the title (photo provided). 

 

All photos are subject to review and are run at the discretion of Northwest Indiana Catholic Publications. Electronic submissions only to NorthwestIndianaCatholic@gmail.com . Photo submission implies consent has been obtained by photo subjects. Captions must be 100 words or less.

Andrean baseball 1

Andrean High School 59ers sing "Alma Mater" as players hold the state Class 3A baseball champisonship trophy on the grass in Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

by Anthony D. Alonzo

Northwest Indiana Catholic

 

      INDIANAPOLIS ­– In sports, scripts are of little value. Even juggernaut teams have to prepare for the unexpected.

      When the No. 1-ranked Andrean High School 59ers baseball team arrived at Victory Field in the state’s capital, they were riding a 34-game winning streak and knocking on the door of the Indiana High School Athletic Association history books.

      They had a couple close contests leading up to a 5-0 win over Yorktown High School in the Kokomo semi-state on June 8 that earned them a spot to defend their state title in Indianapolis on June 18. But they also had outscored their opponents 39-12 in the postseason.

      For 40-year Andrean coach and Class of 1971 member Dave Pishkur, a win in the title tilt would give him his seventh championship ring, and place him in a three-way tie for the state record. Most fans were unaware that the coach’s father, Tony Pishkur, had passed away the day before the game at age 96.

      During the game, players had quietly reminded each other that the title contest was dedicated to the memory of Pishkur’s late father.

      The coach would later speak of his family’s loss to reporters after the game.

      Things began slowly for the 59ers (35-1) after rain delayed the start of the Class 3A championship versus the Edgewood High School Mustangs (24-3) of Ellettsville. The game featured four innings of no-hit ball thrown by Andrean graduating senior Michael Doolin and Edgewood’s Luke Hayden.

      In the sixth inning, Andrean’s ace appeared to lose a bit of his location and Edgewood’s Ethan Vecrumba hit a single and followed up with a stolen base. Then, the Mustangs’ Coleman Sater notched an RBI triple, giving Edgewood a 1-0 advantage.

      Doolin who owned a .40 ERA shook his head as he walked to the dugout where fellow senior Matt Lelito, outfielder, was rallying his teammates.

      “We need to fight because we have to win this game; we’re going to win this game,” Lelito shouted from a scrum of 59ers.

      In the bottom frame of the sixth, junior catcher Jake Mullen battled at the plate and earned a walk. Pinch runner senior Ben Warren was nearly picked off but an errant throw to the first basemen saw him scramble to third. Warren then had an opportunity to, after some hesitation, see a play develop and dash for home.

      The wild play that allowed Andrean to tie the game resulted from Doolin striking out and the ball rolling past Edgewood catcher Harrison Pittsford, who tossed a wild throw past his pitcher at home plate.

      In the seventh inning, senior designated hitter senior Rigo Martinez got Andrean fans on their feet when he launched a two-strike double to left field. Senior Joel Holtcamp reached second base on a Mustangs throwing error.

      Edgewood coaches signaled for an intentional walk of Lelito, which loaded the bases. Then junior outfield Mason Sannito stepped up to the plate looking to supplement his .313 batting average. He connected sending a duck-snort to shallow right field, as pinch runner freshman Robbie Ballentine dove for home, sealing a 2-1 Andrean win.

      The walk-off single sent players to the first baseline to congratulate one another and begin to savor back-to-back state championships, and the program’s seventh overall, tied for second most in the state record books.

      Doolin, a Vanderbilt University (Tenn.) recruit, claimed the state 3A trophy and presented the hardware to his teammates. Teary-eyed through the awards ceremony, he also accepted the L.V. Phillips Mental Attitude Award. The 18-year-old told the stadium announcer that his teammates have been the key to his success.

      “That’s the kind of players we are, when one person is not having a good day, we try to pick them up,” Doolin said.

      Heading to the locker room Doolin again deflected praise and instead lauded the support of his biological family. 

      “The most important thing in my life is my family; they are the building block to my success,” Doolin explained, after earning his 14th victory of the season.

      He also called Pishkur “the best coach in the world.”

      Coach Pishkur, on hearing the remark said: “He can embellish what he said about me, but I’ll tell you, he’s the best pitcher I ever had at Andrean, and he’s the best pitcher Northwest Indiana has ever seen in my 40 years.”

      Pishkur told reporters that as a faithful Catholic family, they can’t help but think that there was some “divine intervention,” as his father may have been “pulling some strings” for him and the players.

      “(My father) passed away so he could watch the game from upstairs,” he added, saying he loved him very much.

 

Andrean baseball 2

Andrean High School 59ers coach Dave Pishkur speaks to assistant coaches during the state Class 3A baseball champisonship game at Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown, tied for second best in the record books. Pishkur, in his 40th season as coach, became the winningest in IHSAA history during the playoffs and tied for most state championships. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Andrean baseball 3

Andrean High School 59ers pitching ace Michael Doolin throws during the first inning of play in the state Class 3A baseball championship game at Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown, tied for second best in the record books. Owning a .40 ERA, Doolin a Vanderbilt University recruit, earned his 14th victory on the season. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Andrean baseball 4

Andrean High School 59ers sophomore Charlie Jones (center) motions for fans to make some noise late  in the state Class 3A baseball champisonship game at Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown, tied for second best in the record books. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Andrean baseball 5

Andrean High School 59ers junior outfielder Mason Sannito connects with a pitch during the bottom half of the seventh inning, driving a walk-off RBI blooper into right field, during the state Class 3A baseball champisonship at Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown, tied for second best in the record books. Coach Dave Pishkur, in his 40th season as coach, became the winningest in IHSAA history during the playoffs and tied for most state championships. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Andrean baseball 6

Andrean High School 59ers pile on each other as they celebrate their state Class 3A baseball championship win, on the grass in Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown, tied for second best in the record books. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

 

Andrean baseball 7

A group of Andrean High School graduating seniors cheer on the 59ers during the state Class 3A baseball champisonship game at Victory Field in Indianapolis on June 18. Andrean defeated Edgewood High School of Ellettsville 2-1 to claim back-to-back state titles and the program's seventh crown, tied for second best in the record books. Coach Dave Pishkur, in his 40th season as coach, became the winningest in IHSAA history during the playoffs and tied for most state championships. (Anthony D. Alonzo photo)

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