CHICAGO HEIGHTS | For a team that hasn't had much trouble hitting all season, Marian Catholic's Spartans simply ran into the wrong pitcher on the wrong day.
The Spartans fell 7-0 to Peotone in the Class 3A Marian Catholic Regional championship Saturday morning. Peotone starter Emily Carstens held the Spartans to six hits.
Trailing 5-0, Marian Catholic had the bases loaded in the top of the sixth but were unable to plate a run and keep the rally going. Three of Marian's six hits came in the sixth inning.
Carlee Wisniewski and Gabi Angellotti each had two hits for the Spartans.
"Our bats were strong all year," Marian Catholic coach Kerri Evans said. "Obviously, (Carstens) is a very good pitcher. Not many teams have held us down, and she did. She did a good job."
Marian Catholic (16-16) starter Allison Spence allowed one run over the first two innings, but the Blue Devils bats came to life in the third. Peotone used five hits to score three runs to take a 4-0 lead.
"In terms of our pitching, I thought (catcher) Gabi (Angellotti) called a good game," Evans said. "I thought Spence threw a great game. Some of those hits they got, if we were a little stronger defensively, I don't think they get those hits."
The Spartans best shot at some runs came in the sixth inning when Wisniewski singled to start the inning. Two batters later, Angellotti singled and the Spartans had two on with one out. After a strikeout, Haley Earl singled and the bases were loaded with two out. Marian Catholic's Emily Montalvo hit a sharp grounder off of Carstens' glove, but the Peotone second baseman fielded the loose ball and threw to first for the unorthodox 1-4-3 putout.
"There was a lot of pressure because of the championship game, but I just see the ball, hit the ball," Angellotti said. "I think we just didn't get all the hits together like we needed to to score runs."
Marian Catholic will lose only four seniors to graduation, and Evans is confident the team will learn from this season's ups and downs.
"There's a lot of talent on this team," Evans said. "And we're young. We have the bulk of these kids coming back, and we all saw what we need to do to get to where we need to be next year."