Last season, the Evanston Township High School baseball team reached the IHSA Supersectionals for the first time since 2003. So entering this season, the Wildkits had aspirations of getting to that point again or beyond, making it two memorable seasons in a row.
The Kits certainly made the 2015 regular season a memorable one: They tied the school record for wins in a season. After beating Lake Zurich 7-1 in the season finale on May 23, the Kits finished the regular season with an overall record of 25-7-1, matching the 1981 and 1990 teams for most wins in a season.
The regular season was also memorable in that it saw the Kits win 13 games in a row; tally 12 Central Suburban League South Conference victories, which earned them a share of the CSL South Conference title (for the first time since 1990) with New Trier and Glenbrook South; and earn the No. 1 seed in the IHSA Class 4A Niles West Sectional.
Tying the school record for wins in the regular season finale meant the Kits had a chance to set a new record during postseason play. They set that record, beating Lincoln Park 16-1 on May 27 in the Maine South Regional semifinals. With the victory, the Kits improved to 26-7-1. In that game, the Kits got things going in the second inning as 13 batters stepped to the plate, resulting in nine runs. The big blows in the inning were a bases-loaded single by senior Sam Evans and an RBI single by senior Justin Farrow, as the Kits cruised to victory in five innings via the slaughter rule.
With the victory over Lincoln Park, the Kits earned a spot in the Regional title game against Maine South on May 30. On a rainy day in Park Ridge, senior starting pitcher Russell Snapp got out of a first and third situation in the top of the first inning, and the Kits looked to strike first in the bottom half. They did just that, as Justin hit a one-out double. Then with two outs, senior James Allen hit an RBI double to give the Kits an early 1-0 lead.
After the third out was recorded and the Kits were preparing to take the field to start the second, head coach Frank Consiglio encouraged his team by saying, “Way to win an inning, good job.” A couple of players passed the message along, repeating, “Win an inning.” The message was apparently received, because after Russell retired the Hawks in order in the top of the second, junior Ben Wilson extended the lead to 2-0 with a two-out RBI single, allowing the Kits to win another inning.
In the top of the third, Russell retired the first two batters and then gave up a double. It was at this point that play was stopped for the second time. Dirt needed to be applied to the infield, a constant light rain making for sloppy playing conditions. Russell seemed to struggle to find his footing on the mound. When he walked the next batter, play was stopped once again so more dirt could be applied to the pitcher’s mound. Meanwhile, both coaches met with the umpires and decided the game should be postponed.
The Kits and Hawks resumed play on June 1. The Kits allowed a run, making it a 2-1 contest, but that was as close as it would get, as the Kits held on for the 2-1 victory, thus capturing the Maine South Regional title.
In winning the Regional, the Kits earned a trip to the Niles West Sectional semifinals on June 3, and were set to take on Fenwick, who beat New Trier 2-1 in the Von Steuben Regional final in a nine-inning contest. Should the Kits beat Fenwick, they would take on the winner of Oak Park-River Forest and Loyola Academy in the Sectional title game on June 6 in Niles.