Baseball: Oak Forest Edges Argo; Barry Remains One Home Run Away
Bengals push across a run in the seventh to earn a 2-1 victory, as slugger Tim Barry reaches base twice but remains one homer away from sole possession of the state record.
Touching All the Bases: In a game full of tension and anticipation for what might happen, Oak Forest made sure that a win was the ultimate result.
With Bengals starting pitcher Arthur Johnson leading the way, Oak Forest defeated conference foe Argo 2-1 on Thursday. Johnson pitched a complete game and had four strikeouts while not giving up an earned run.
The Oak Forest crowd buzzed with anticipation every time Bengals senior left fielder Tim Barry came to the plate, and rightly so. Barry entered the game in a groove, having hit four home runs on Wednesday during Oak Forest’s doubleheader sweep at T.F. North. Those four round-trippers gave him 49 for his career, tying him for the Illinois high school record (with Curtis Parrish of Odin). Barry also entered the day one RBI away from tying the state career mark in that category.
Before Barry got his first chance at the home run record, Argo put a run on the board on Ryan Krob’s RBI double in the first inning. Krob’s hit scored a runner who had reached on an error that came when Barry got his glove on a ball but couldn’t make the catch.
Barry singled in the Bengals’ half of the first. Later in the frame, Bengals designated hitter Kyle Linares hit an RBI blooper to score freshman Brian Richard.
Johnson cruised on the mound from that point on, allowing no more runs.
Barry had a fly out in his next at-bat, and then was hit by a pitch in his final plate appearance, which came in the sixth inning.
With the game tied at 1-all, Oak Forest pushed across the winning run in the seventh. Cody Murray reached on a leadoff infield single and made his way to third base after Tom Livingston was hit by a pitch and George Jester laid down a sacrifice bunt. Johnson drew a walk to load the bases, and Murray scored the winning run when John Zubek was hit by a pitch.
Patch’s MVP: Oak Forest starting pitcher Arthur Johnson (7 innings pitched, 4 strikeouts, 0 earned runs) improved to 2-1 with the win.
Oak Forest’s Leaders: In addition to Johnson, center fielder Cody Murray (2-for-3, winning run), catcher John Zubek (game-winning RBI on a hit by pitch, designated hitter Kyle Linares (1-for-3 with an RBI).
Argo’s Leaders: Starting pitcher Jordan Ashley (7 innings pitched, 2 earned runs), shortstop Ryan Krob (1-for-3, RBI).
Quotable: Oak Forest coach Thaddeus Gatton on Johnson’s performance: “You know what we needed today, more than anything, more than the home run? We needed six or seven innings and (Johnson) gave them to us. With all the games backed up right now, our pitching, along with everyone, is pretty banged up and tired.”
Team Records: Oak Forest improved to 15-3 overall and 13-1 in the South Suburban Conference. Argo fell to 9-10 overall and 4-9 in the South Suburban Conference.
What’s Next: The Tim Barry Watch continues today when Oak Forest hosts Bremen at 4:30 p.m.