The Region's Team Of Northwest Indiana


Oilmen ready to host Hounds on Friday

06/24/2016 9:34 AM -

DuPage County Hounds (12-9)
at Northwest Indiana Oilmen (9-11)

June 24, 2016 • 7:20 p.m. • Whiting, Ind.
Radio: AM 1230 & 104.7 FM WJOB,

Pitching Matchup
NWI’s Richard Yelnick (Parkland / Trinity Christian / New Lenox, Ill.) vs. DuPage County’s Peter Hamot (Lewis University / Downers Grove, Ill.)

For Starters
The Oilmen, who haven now dropped three straight games, have scored in the first inning in 13 of the last 14 games. After 18 straight games where the Oilmen starting pitcher gave up four earned runs or fewer, Oilmen starters have allowed five earned runs or more back-to-back games. Christian Howell issued six walks in Thursday’s 8-5 loss to Southland, the most walks allowed by an Oilmen starting pitcher since Brandon Murray walked eight against the Lakers on July 26, 2015. Friday’s starting pitcher Richard Yelnick is the reigning Midwest Collegiate League Pitcher of the Week. He racked up eight strikeouts and walked just one while yielding three hits over six shutout innings. Yelnick became the second Oilmen pitcher to strike out eight in a game this season, joining Luke Jaksich, who fanned eight Lakers on June 8. Yelnick also became the first Oilmen pitcher to win the league’s weekly award this season. He is 2-0 with an 0.69 ERA (2 R, 1 ER, 13 IP) this season with 14 strikeouts and just one walk in two starts and four total appearances.

Inside the Oilmen
Zack Forney had two hits and reached base three times to climb into the team lead in on-base percentage at .544. Forney’s hitting streak is up to six games, and he’s been on base in 10 of the 11 games he’s played with the Oilmen. He’s got four multiple hit games, including two in a row. Stefano Belmonte has not struck out in 56 plate appearances this season. He leads the team in RBIs with 16. Chase Dawson has reached base in all 11 games he’s played with the Oilmen. Alex Nisle has at least one RBI in each of his last five games and has his average up to .200, his high water mark for the summer. Jordan Flint has his average up to .314 after he was hitting .200 through the first eight games. He’s 11-for-26 (.423 AVG) over the last seven games. Flint has four multi-hit games during that seven-game stretch. Cory Krolikowski returned after missing seven straight games with injury and went 1-for-5. Tommy Szczasny had his fifth multi-hit game in nine games with the Oilmen by going 2-for-5 on Thursday. Tyler Sroczynski holds a 10-game hitting streak and is a perfect 11-for-11 in stolen base attempts. He has successful stolen 16 straight bases going back to last year and is 28-of-31 in stolen base attempts in his two seasons with the Oilmen.

Inside the Hounds
Dane Toppel is the reigning Midwest College League Offensive Player of the Week after batting .631. He leads the team in batting average (.407), runs scored (20) and OBP (.533). Toppel, who owns a 12-game hitting streak, continued to produce with five runs scored in Thursday’s 22-5 win over the Bobcats, which came in Game 1 of a doubleheader. The Bobcats led 4-0 through two innings, but the Hounds got one in the third before exploding for five in the fourth, four in the fifth, five in the fifth and seven in the seventh. Bloomington issued 10 walks and committed four errors, while DuPage County racked up 19 hits. Javier Martinez notched five RBIs, while Ryan Krob and Mike Roberson turned in four apiece. The Hounds are 56-for-70 in stolen bases this season. The Oilmen have just 28 stolen bases this year. Joey Roberson has three straight multiple hit games and is 5-for-16 during that stretch.

About the Matchup
The Oilmen and Hounds engaged in a rare lopsided meeting last week when the Oilmen prevailed 13-2, NWI’s most recent victory. It was just the second time ever a game between the two teams was decided by more than nine runs, with the first coming on July 6, 2012 when the Oilmen won 22-10 at DuPage County. The Hounds lead the season series 2-1 and all-time series 20-17.

Click "download attachment" to view full Oilmen game notes.