St. Charles East senior left fielder Joe Hoscheit went 3 for 3 in Thursday’s 2-1 Saints win against Glenbard East in an IHSA Class 4A Geneva Baseball Regional semifinal. Hoscheit, a Northwestern recruit, spoke with sports editor Jay Schwab after the game about his recent offensive success, this morning’s regional championship game at Geneva and trying to stay focused with graduation looming on Sunday. The following is an edited transcript:
How difficult is to balance baseball and all the end-of-the-year school stuff with graduation coming up?
I mean I don’t feel overloaded at all, I’m just enjoying everything. I’m trying to enjoy every last minute of high school because I know college is coming soon. I’m just trying to enjoy every moment and enjoy everyone on the baseball field and graduation. I’m just hoping that we can advance.
How much have you been following Northwestern’s season?
I’m obviously focused on our season but I definitely look at theirs. They’ve been like a .500 ballclub. I don’t think they made the Big Ten tournament and that’s always the goal every year, so hopefully they can do that next year.
Back to this team. It seems like you’ve been hitting for average like crazy lately. Are you happy with what you’ve been doing offensively?
Yeah, I’m just trying to hit the ball hard. To get out of that slump at the beginning of the year is huge for me. Now I’m just going up there thinking I’m going to hit the ball hard every time, and hopefully put it in play to get some baserunners or get some runs in.
With the pitching that you guys have, do you feel like all you need to do offensively is score two runs [like Thursday] or is that kind of a dangerous thought to have?
We always want to score as many runs as possible but we trust in our pitchers and it’s showing in close ballgames like this. We can win these games but once we get farther in the playoffs we know that’s not going to be an option so we need to get the bats going.
If you guys go on to play Geneva [Geneva and Glenbard West were scheduled to play Friday], does it matter that it’s on their field? Does the venue matter at all in baseball?
No, not really at all. I know they feel comfortable here but we do, too. I mean, we’ve won regional titles two of the last three years here so we feel comfortable with this field. We just come out and play hard every game. It doesn’t matter really where we play.
You’ve caught [in the past]. Do you miss that at all?
Yeah, I do. I think I’m going to be doing a little of that at Northwestern, too, so I’m going to work on that this summer. But [Adam Rojas is] doing a great job behind there. … If he keeps up the defense behind the plate, we’ll be in good shape.