Glenbard North shuts out Oak Park-River Forest

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Before Glenbard North center fielder Sarah Petzold stepped up to the plate in the seventh inning, her team up a run against Oak Park-River Forest and two runners on, she got a little pep talk from teammate Alex Caliva.

“She just said ‘You’ve been on the ball all day – you can do this’,” Petzold said. “She then said ‘If you want to be a hero be a hero in this spot’.”

Petzold took Caliva’s advice well, smashing a double to left-center bringing home both runners and all but sealing her team’s 4-0 Class 4A Supersectional win at Rosemont Stadium. The Panthers (30-5) advance Downstate for the first time since 2001 and the third time in school history.

They’ll meet Warren on Friday — a 3-1 winner over Barrington.

“This is huge for our school,” Glenbard North coach Josh Sanew said. “We’ve been blessed with great kids who compete and work hard. There isn’t a better group you can be around. [Pitcher] Cece [Dopart] pitched a heck of a game.”

Dopart went the distance, struck out eight, walked three and scattered five hits. She was at her best when the pressure was at its’ highest. She got out of two bases loaded jams in the third and sixth innings, stranding 12 runners total on the day for the Huskies (27-10).

She retired the side in order in the seventh.

“It was a lot let pressure relieved [after we scored in the seventh],” Dopart said. “I made sure all of my pitches were perfect when they had runners on base. This feels amazing to have a chance to go Downstate with this team.”

The Panthers added a third run in the seventh on an RBI ground out to first scoring Petzhold (2-for-4). Kayla Quanstrum didn’t figure in the scoring but was 3-for-3 with a double for the Panthers.  Dopart added an RBI single in the fourth scoring Heather Sperlazza.

Emma Baldwin was 2-for-3 for the Huskies, including a double in the fourth inning.

“I’m just so excited I’ve never experienced this before,” Petzhold said.

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