Pitch perfect

Giovanelli throws no hitter as team advances


Lilia Gonzalez-Baldwin

Junior captain Stefano Giovanelli pitches the ball May 27. Giovanelli threw a no-hitter, contributing to a 6-0 win against Minneapolis South.

Katie Nelson

Highlighted by a no-hitter performance from junior Stefano Giovanelli, Park rallied from no runs in the fourth inning to a 6-0 win over Minneapolis South May 27. Although going up against the seventh seed in the tournament and with a record of 16-6,  coach Brian Kelly said he knew it would be a close matchup. 

“The Minneapolis schools in the playoffs are always really tough teams to play. You look at the teams, and see the seven versus the two seed, (but) we had a good feeling that the game was going to be a well-fought game,” Kelly said. “When you have a kid like Stefano pitching, that’s really hard to beat.”

According to Giovanelli, the victory was a crucial swing of momentum for the team as they continue into the playoffs. 

“We kept them scoreless, we kept them hitless and we got runs when we needed to get them. We’re moving on to the next round and this game went really well,” Giovanelli said. 

To prepare for the game, Kelly said the team discussed possible scenarios and it’s reactions. 

“We talked about it yesterday where it might be a one run game or a zero-zero game in the fourth or fifth inning, so we can’t go deflated if that happens,” Kelly said. “It was a challenge, but we were prepared for it, which was a highlight of the game.”

Although the team secured a victory, senior Ben Farley said consistent hitting is something they hope to improve upon as they advance in playoffs. 

“We weren’t really getting going at the plate and we’re watching pitches that we could have hit. But in the (out)field, we were pretty good and our pitching was good,” Farley said. 

Despite the challenges, Giovanelli believes the team responded well to the pressure. 

“I would say we started off a little slow, we weren’t really expecting a close game, but we knew what we had to do,” Giovanelli said. 

After a 4-1 win against Minneapolis Southwest May 28, Park will face off against Hopkins in the section finals at 4:30 p.m. June 1 at Hopkins High School.