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Prep baseball: Big inning helps Cougars past Tigers

JOLIET – Plainfield North’s baseball team visited District 202 rivals Plainfield South on Monday, as the Tigers entered the Southwest Pairie Conference contest with a 12-game winning streak.

Starting pitchers Dylan Szajkovics (North) and Griffin Lapp (South) were cruising along until the bottom of the third inning. South scored six runs in the third to take control and eventually came away with a 7-4 victory over North.

Plainfield North responded by scoring four runs in the top of the fourth inning, but wouldn’t get any closer. But after that, the game retreated to the what it had been in the early portion of the contest: a pitchers’ duel.

The Tigers (15-8, 11-3) have a makeup game Tuesday at Oswego East and the Cougars (23-6, 11-4) have won six of their past nine games.

“Certainly they’ve had success in the past, but in high school athletics it’s not like you’re playing in a private school or in Florida where you’ll continue to win,” Cougars coach Phil Bodine said. “We’re a pretty good baseball team, too, with a 23-6 record. When you get up by six with Griffin Lapp on the mound, you figure it’s going to be tough to come back.”

Lapp, a senior, improved to 5-1, allowing four earned runs on six hits while striking out five without a walk.

Leading South was Tony Mosher, who drove in two runs in the decisive third inning. Also getting RBIs for the Cougars were Tylor Phommachanhom (2 for 3), Connor Blake, Zach Pawlak and Lapp.

North was paced by Aiden Campbell (two RBIs), Garret Cook (2 for 3), Eben Heine (RBI) and Brandon Hutson (RBI). Plainfield North had its 12-game winning streak snapped in the loss.

“It is what it is, and we have a long week ahead of us,” Tigers coach John Darlington said. “It’s one game, and it doesn’t mean much now. If you don’t play defense and pitch, it doesn’t really matter in baseball. We had our shot, but we just didn’t do it.”