By Chase Hensing
In Glenelg’s 61 year history as a school, it has had many athletic accolades in many different sports. One of the most prominent sports that Glenelg had success in is baseball. Since Opening, the school has won five state championships, including one in 1983. However, the last time Glenelg was able to win a state championship in baseball was 1999, making it a 20 year drought. The team despite this drought, was hoping to run the table this year and hang another banner on the walls in the gym at Glenelg.
The Gladiators had a rough regular season, finishing well below .500 and barely being able to string together six wins before playoffs. However, this is not a usual season for Glenelg. Glenelg is a school that is used to performing well in baseball. Glenelg Junior and player on the team, TJ George, said “Headed into playoffs we were confident, we needed to make sure we eliminated our high error and strikeout numbers, these were both important given that we have lost so many games by just one run.” These changes would have made a huge difference for the gladiators considering the team was only batting in the .200-.220 range.
On Thursday May ninth, the Gladiators played their first playoff game against Hammond High School. Before the game, Sophomore Ryan Mckee was confident in their chances of winning and said, “We have only played Hammond once and we beat them so I think that we can repeat what we did last time. Obviously they have improved, but I think that we have too, it should be a good game.” The gladiators were able to pull out the win over Hammond in the fifth inning, beating them with a score of 11-1. The gladiators managed to stick to their game plan and maintain good defense throughout the whole game and by the end they had made just one error. Perhaps the biggest impact on the game was the duo of pitcher and catcher Gavin Henly and Eddie Dello Russo. Eddie showed off his arm by throwing just 52 pitches in five innings, Dello Russo did not only do it on the mound, but he also had a stellar game at the plate, hitting a triple and driving in two runs. However this duo isn’t complete without Gavin Henly obtaining two hits and driving in an additional three runs. Henly said, “The game was a good team effort all around. Everyone did their job and did what they needed to get the win, we are looking forward to riding this momentum.” As evident in the Hammond game, when the Gladiators are on their game they are a team that can accomplish impressive feats and can win big games.
The Gladiators second playoff game resulted in a loss to the Marriotts Ridge Mustangs in a nail biting 6-5 game on Saturday May eleventh. The Gladiators were lead on the mound by Senior Tad Henly, who pitched the entire game and only let up one hit. Sadly, the Gladiators were killed once again by errors, letting in 5 unearned runs. The most Notable offensive performance for the Gladiators was Senior Hunter Koele, who hit a triple and drove in two runs late in the game to tie it up. However late in the game the Gladiators could not pull through on the offensive side of the ball and came up just short, ending the season. Junior right fielder, Connor Leard, said, “The team this year was great, all the Seniors were super supportive and helped a lot. I think we have a good team chemistry and I can’t wait for next season.” Needless to say the program is prepared to work hard next season and aim towards winning another state championship.