PORTAGE - The Bishop Carroll Catholic baseball team's strength is its pitching.
And as long as the Huskies provide the offense to match the efforts on the mound, they will win games.
Monday afternoon was a classic example of how dangerous seventh-seeded Bishop?Carroll can be.
Nick Lassak and Ryan Woo combined to silence Portage's bats as the Huskies upset the second-seeded Mustangs, 5-2, in the District 6 Class A quarterfinals.
"We've pitched great all season. Our pitchers have been solid," Bishop Carroll coach Matt Pfeil said. "We got two great performances from Nick Lassak and then Ryan Woo came in and closed it. They stayed composed and threw strikes."
Lassak allowed only two runs on two hits in 3 1/3 innings. But he found himself in a bases-loaded jam after walking three and giving up an RBI single to Derek Cyran that pulled Portage (12-5) to within two in the fourth inning.
Pfeil called on Woo to hold down the fort with one out, and he didn't disappoint.
The senior got Jeremy Piatak to ground into a force at home, and then froze lead off hitter Evan Price with a breaking ball on a 3-2 count to end the threat.
Portage coach Larry McCabe commended Woo's confidence on the game-changing pitch.
"That tells me that, number one, the average player doesn't look for that pitch," McCabe said. "Number two, you gotta protect the plate. And [Woo] was even confident enough to throw a breaking ball [on a] 3-2 [count].
"To me, that was a big pitch in the game, at a very key moment. That could have been ball four and [the score] could have been 4-3. But it wasn't."
Lassak and Drew McCabe each were 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI, while Taylor Makin was 4-for-4 with two RBIs for the Huskies (12-8).
Bishop Carroll jumped on Portage starter Andrew Maul quickly, but only scored one run and left the bases loaded in the first inning.
Maul scattered 11 hits, struck out seven and walked two.
Bishop Carroll will play at third-seeded Ferndale on Thursday in the semifinals.
BISHOP CARROLL (5): Link 2b 310, Lassak p-cf 422, McCabe ss 422, Makin c 404, King 3b 301, Woo lf-cf-p 401, Sammarco cf 100, O'Connell rf 201, Maruca dh 300, Strong 1b 000, Tatarko rf-lf 200. Totals 30-5-11.
PORTAGE (2): E. Price ss 401, Nesbella lf 400, Maul p 200, Baker cr 010, Pcola 1b 210, Bryja 2b 300, S. Price cf 301, Kreutzberger c 00, Cyran 3b 301, Piatak rf 300. Totals 24-2-3.
SCORE BY INNINGS
E-Maul, Sammarco. LOB-Bishop Carroll 9, Portage 9. 2B-Lassak, McCabe, S. Price. SB-Kreutzberger. PO-Maruca.
Bishop Carroll-Lassak, 3.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 E, 3 BB, 4 SO; Woo (W), 3.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 5 SO.
Portage-Maul (L), 7.0 IP, 11 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 7 SO.
HBP-by Maul (Maruca), by Lassak (Kreutzberger). WP-Maul 4. Balk-Maul.
Records: Bishop Carroll (12-8); Portage (12-5).