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CHIEFS REMAIN IN STATE TOURNEY WINNERS BRACKET WITH TWO WINS

Sunday, July 8, 2012 • POSTED BY:  Paul Honeycutt Times Correspondent

HAMMOND | Andrean coach Dave Pishkur is probably smiling right at this moment.

The reason for the predicted smile is because of soon-to-be junior Jimmy Skiff.

The current 59er threw a complete-game beauty in the Hammond Chiefs' 11-1 win over the Kokomo D-Backs on Saturday night in the Babe Ruth State Tournament 

"I found out Thursday that I was pitching and there were some pregame nerves, but that always drives me," said Skiff, who tossed a two-hitter with 10 strikeouts. "I thought my change-up was my best pitch because it was my strikeout pitch."

With that win, the Chiefs (24-9) will stay in the winner's bracket and face the winner of the LaPorte Lakers-Schererville Indians game at 5:30 tonight at Riverside Park.

"Dave has a great program over there and we're fortunate to get some of his kids because he works hard with them and it's a privilege to go there," Chiefs manager Dave Sutkowski said.

"Jimmy has a lot of potential. He's pitched well for the Seminoles all summer and we had confidence about bringing him up."

Speaking of being fortunate to get kids from a solid program, Sutkowski might be thanking Illiana Christian head coach Dan Gibson after fine offensive efforts from Tyler Sroczynski and Josh Van Beek.

The Vikings duo — who batted leadoff and fourth, respectively — were both 3-for-4. Van Beek had three RBIs, a run scored and steal, while Sroczynski added two runs scored and two steals.

"Tyler is a fast player who gets on a lot and hopefully when I'm up, I can drive him in," Van Beek said. "I've been struggling a bit by popping the ball up a lot, so I just tried to keep it simple."