WHEATFIELD | Andrean’s dominance in the Class 3A Kankakee Valley Sectional is reaching epic proportions.
The Niners, ranked No. 2 in the state, won their 11th straight crown in dominating fashion with a 8-0 win over the host Kougars Saturday night. It was Andrean’s 22nd sectional title in school annals.
"Our focus at the beginning of the year is to win hardware, and this is this is the first hardware you can win," Andrean coach Dave Pishkur said. "We manage our schedule so we play some really good teams in the course of the season. … When you get out here, you're not going to be intimidated."
Junior starter Zac Ryan, a Georgia Tech recruit, overcame a shaky first inning and retired the final 19 Kougars in order to improve his mark to 10-1. He struck out 13 and the one-hitter was his sixth shutout of the season.
"My cutter was working very well," Ryan said.
Meanwhile, the Niners (27-4) made the most of six hits, breaking the game open with three runs in the fourth to take a commanding 6-0 lead. Mike Brosseau's two-run triple was the big blow
"We knew we had (Zac) on the mound, and we were just trying to get as much insurance as we can," Brosseau said.
Matt DeSomer belted a run-scoring double in the third inning.
"I don’t know if we have a superstar hitter, but we have nine guys who can hit the ball," Pishkur said. "It’s kind of pick your poison. Mike Brosseau had a big day, and DeSomer had some big hits."
Andrean advances to the Plymouth Regional next Saturday and faces Griffith in the first game.
"We know what it takes to go all the way, but we’re taking it one step at a time and one game at a time," Brosseau said.
K.V. (17-14) couldn't capitalize on Ryan's bad first inning. A hit batsman, a single and a error loaded the bases with one out, but Ryan got a ground ball for a 6-4-3 double play.
"After that, I just got in my rhythm, and even through the little breaks and what-not, I just stayed in it and kept myself focused," he said.
Jake Wright singled in the first for the Kougars' lone hit.
"Once (Ryan) got rolling, he was nearly impossible to hit," said K.V. coach Doug Greenlee. "Another thing too, I know he had a lot of strikeouts and he throws awfully hard, but when you got a defense behind you, it gives you more confidence.
"Let’s face it, there an awfully good team. You have to play a perfect game, and you know that going in, to beat 'em, and it didn’t happen."