Whiting, Ind. – Aug. 3, 2022 – When Matt and Jake Ostrowski see the mound in the same game, typically it’s Jake getting the start and Matt coming out of the bullpen.
But the roles were reversed on Wednesday night at Oil City Stadium. And the brothers looked as comfortable as ever, with Matt tossing six shutout innings to earn the win and Jake logging three scoreless frames to nail down the save as the Oilmen blanked the Southland Vikings 6-0 in a game that took just two hours, 17 minutes to complete.
“The coolest part of it is that almost every other time they’ve pitched, it’s the other way around,” Oilmen manager Adam Enright said. “Jake would be the one going six or seven innings with Matt going two or three. For it to work out that way was cool. That’s the most innings Matt has thrown in a game in four or five years. It’s something that I’m sure they’ll remember.”
The Vikings (26-17) were held to just five hits as the Oilmen pitching staff hurled its second shutout of the season and first since May 30, a 14-0 win at Crestwood. Matt’s stellar showing came in his first start and his fourth appearance of the summer. He hadn’t toed the rubber since June 10.
“It was huge because we’re living day-to-day right now pitching wise,” Enright said. “We’ve only had to throw one inning of a position player all season, but we’re getting to that point because we’re trying to set things up for the postseason. We were fully prepared to throw a few position players today because getting six innings out of Matt Ostrowski is something that we didn’t foresee happening.”
The Oilmen (23-21) returned to the win column and moved to within one victory of nailing down the team’s 11th straight winning season. Furthermore, the Oilmen inched closer to Joliet, which currently holds third place in the Northern League standings by a narrow margin over NWI.
“This helps us remember that we can win,” Enright said. “You learn to lose and you learn to win. Relearning how to win and showing up every day with that mindset is important.”
The Oilmen jumped in front with back-to-back doubles to start the scoring, before Southland starter Nick Noles settled in to send down 14 consecutive batters. The Oilmen produced a two-out run in the fifth before adding three in the seventh including a two-run double by David Marshall. Marshall finished with three hits and drove in four, while Sai Robinson also produced a two-hit game.
The Oilmen will host the Crestwood Panthers on Thursday at 7:10 p.m. at Oil City Stadium. Tickets are available now on NWIOilmen.com. Brandon Vickrey and Leo Staudacher will have the call on the Oilmen Broadcasting Network.