The Commercial-News, Danville, IL


April 21, 2013

Thurston has complete package

DANVILLE — Chase Thuston strives for perfection — both on and off the baseball field.

On Saturday morning, the senior right-hander was one batter away from his first no-hitter as a Viking.

Instead, Thurston had to settled for a 1-hit shutout and he recorded 17 strikeouts as Danville defeated Decatur Eisenhower 6-0 in a Big 12 Conference contest at Garfield Park.

“It was pretty frustrating,’’ Thurston said. “But you have to look at the game as a whole — 17 strikeouts, a shutout and a win over a conference opponent. It was still a good game.’’

Eisenhower’s Dalton Jimison got the Panthers only hit in the contest with a two-out infield single in the seventh.

“I knew it was a tough play,’’ said Thurston as Danville’s shortstop Grant Lamar’s throw was just a tick late. “I was hoping he could make it. It was a close play at first, and it’s a tough call.’’

Thurston, who has already committed to play at Eastern Illinois next year, was bidding to be the 16th pitcher in school history to throw a no-hitter and the 25th no-hitter in Viking baseball history.

“It would have been pretty amazing to go down with some of the great pitchers in Danville history,’’ said Thurston, as Tyler Brandon is the last Viking pitcher to throw a no-hitter. “Maybe, next time.’’

And, Thurston just missed a new school record with the 17 strikeouts.

Jason Anderson, a former Major Leaguer and former University of Illinois standout, holds the mark with 18 against Rantoul in 1997.

“Chase has electric stuff some days, where when he is getting that breaking ball over, it’s 12-to-6, it’s hard, it’s fast, and it’s a tough pitch to hit,’’ Gritton said. “Every time we’ve given him the ball, it’s been a really good outing.

“I’ve been very pleased with his effort.’’

Thurston, who has thrown 23 consecutive scoreless innings, improved to 3-0 this season with the victory.

“We had a tough loss to Normal Community (1-0 in 11 innings) last Saturday, and it’s good to comeback with a conference win at home,’’ Thurston said.

But, the senior still wanted a high school no-hitter to go along with his no-hitter last summer with Danville Post 210.

“He was ticked off when he didn’t get a no-hitter,’’ Gritton said. “It was a great performance, regardless.’’

And to lose it on the second-to-last batter after thinking about since the second inning added to the frustration for Thurston.

“It was in the back of my head, but you never want to talk about it on the field, or you will jinx yourself,’’ he said.

But, why did he think that he could throw a no-hitter on Saturday against Eisenhower?

“I just felt like I had good command and I knew I could go the distance,’’ he said. “My curve ball was working really well today, I felt like I had good velocity on my fastball and I just tried to hit spots.’’

The Panthers, who did draw two walks off of Thurston, managed to get just one ball out of the infield against the senior right-hander.

But, it still wasn’t perfect and that leaves Thurston something to work on before his next start.

“Chase is a perfectionist in every thing he does,’’ Gritton said. “His grades — he’s a brilliant student. He is even a perfectionist when he works on the mound after the game.

“And when he’s pitching, he has really good stuff. He has a sneaky fastball, an outstanding breaking ball, a good changeup and he is a competitor on the mound, who has the smarts. He is the complete package.’’

And that’s why Thurston is going to be a preferred walk-on next year at Eastern Illinois University.

“Being a preferred walk-on means that I’m on the team, but I’m not getting any scholarship money for athletics,’’ said Thurston, who is receiving a Presidential scholarship for academics, and may qualify for many other academic awards based on his very high grade-point average and a 33 ACT score.

And when Thurston joins the Panthers next season, he will be playing for a pair of Vikings.

Former Danville standout Ben Wolgamot is in his second year at Eastern Illinois and Anderson is in his first season as the Panthers pitching coach.

“With two Danville guys being there, that was a big part of my decision,’’ said Thurston, who also considered Danville Area Community College and Illinois Wesleyan. “I love the facility, as I went to two showcase camps there and my mom went to the school.

“But, getting an offer from a Division I school was a big deal, I felt like I had to take it.’’

In the second game, a non-conference contest, Danville freshman Dylan Marble and junior Mike Vascura combined to throw another 1-hitter against Eisenhower.

Marble, who went six innings, earned his first varsity victory in the Vikings 6-0 triumph over the Panthers.

“Dylan has really done a nice job in his first two varsity contests,’’ Gritton said. “He walked the first two batters and Brady Watkins made a big play to help him out of that jam. After that, he settled down and pitched well.’’

The Vikings, who improved to 6-6 overall and 1-1 in the Big 12 Conference on Saturday, had just nine hits in the sweep.

Danville is back in action on Tuesday with a home contest against the Champaign Centennial Chargers. First pitch at Danville Stadium is set for 4:30 p.m.

Text Only
  • SPT- CN0711- Speakers photo 2 Speakers get fuel for postseason with victory TILTON — Led by a pair of Westville products, the Danville Post 210 Speakers picked up an important win on Thursday night. After falling to Clinton (Ind.) Post 140 by one run earlier in the season, the Speakers put up six runs and shut out Clinton, t

    July 11, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT- CN0711- Dans photo 1 Terre Haute walks past Danville DANVILLE — Good teams don’t give up free bases.Danville Dans manager Eric Coleman knows this all too well and it has served his team well this summer, except for Thursday night.The Terre Haute Rex took advantage of nine walks and three errors to beat

    July 11, 2014 2 Photos

  • Conditions now can work for duck hunters in future Duck hunters appear to be in for a great hunting season this year if populations are any indication. With all the rain throughout the Midwest, the states directly above us, and the provinces of Canada directly to our north the country we call “the po

    July 11, 2014

  • SPT - CN0710 - Riverhawks logo Riverhawks find a home in Premier Basketball League DANVILLE — The Danville Riverhawks have finally landed in the league.On Wednesday, the Premier Basketball League announced the Danville franchise as its newest addition.Devin Johnson and Floyd Brown, the co-owners of the Riverhawks, were members of t

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • No Headline Provided ——— HORSESHOES At Douglas Park Danville Horseshoe League Team W L Coshocton Grain Co. 17 7 Royal Horseshoe Club 14 10 Bratland's Prescription Shop 13.5 10.5 Block Drywall & Painting 11 13 MLL 8.5 15.5 G

    July 10, 2014

  • Local Sports Scheduled TODAYLegion BaseballClinton (Ind.) at Danville Post 210 Speakers, 6 p.m.Prospect League BaseballTerre Haute Rex at Danville Dans, 6:30 p.m.FRIDAYNo local sports scheduledSATURDAYLegion BaseballDanville Post 210 Speakers at Crawfordsville, 11 a.m.Pros

    July 10, 2014

  • SPT - CN0709- All Star Game photo East Division hammers West TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – For the second year in a row, the East Division has earned home-field advantage in the Prospect League Championship Series with a 9-2 win over the West Division in Tuesday’s All-Star Game before 852 at Bob Warn Field.Richmond’s Ky

    July 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prospect League Glance COLLEGIATE BASEBALL Prospect League Glance Overall Standings East Division W L GB x-Chillicothe Paints 23 10 — West Virginia Miners 22 14 2.5 Butler Blue Sox 21 14 3 Champion City Kings 14 19

    July 9, 2014

  • SPT - CN0708 - Legion Baseball Photo 1 Committee gets job done There’s a good reason why Danville Post 210 Speaker Baseball has a large roster every season. This year’s team features 17 players and, at one point or another, nearly all of them will be needed to pitch.That was the case on Monday night at Danville

    July 8, 2014 2 Photos

  • Local Sports Calendar TODAYLegion BaseballDanville Post 210 Speakers at Piatt County, 6 p.m.Prospect League BaseballAll-Star Game at Bob Warn Field in Terre Haute, Ind., 6:05 p.m.WEDNESDAYNo local sports scheduledTHURSDAYLegion BaseballClinton at Danville Post 210 Speaker

    July 8, 2014

NJCAA Tourney Photos 2014

Check out the action at the NJCAA Division II National Men's Basketball Tournament March 18-22 at DACC. Buy photos from the Commercial-News here:

Must Read
AP Video
More Immigrants Detained Along Rio Grande FIFA Rejects Suarez Appeal Against Biting Ban World Cup Final Pits Argentina Against Germany Obama Responds to Hecklers on Immigration Chimp-attack Victim Lobbies Congress Police: Prostitute Linked to 2nd Death Thousands Attend NYC Firefighter's Funeral Neighbors Mourn Killing of Texas Family Art of Haitian Machete Fighting Revived Israeli-Palestinian Tensions, Attacks Escalate UN Secretary-General Urges Mideast Ceasefire 'Game of Thrones' Leads Emmy Nominees Raw: Australia Hosts Annual Beer Can Regatta At Texas Border, a Daily Tide of Poor Migrants Raw: Rescuers Push Beached Whale Back to Ocean Mass. Mayor: Families Lost Everything in Fire Four Kids, Two Adults Shot Dead Near Houston Connecticut Boy Dies Inside Parked Car Fans Dying to Be Near Jazz Greats Robots Gearing Up for Their Own 'World Cup'
NDN Video
LeBron James returning to Cleveland - @TheBuzzeronFOX Glee Star Becca Tobin's Boyfriend Matt Bendik Found Dead in Hotel Obama Responds to Hecklers on Immigration ScarJo Channels Marilyn Monroe Aerial fish restocking in Utah Tiny Hamsters Who Ate Burritos are Back for a Tiny Hedgehog's Party Watch Kelly Ripa Get Soaked! 'Referee' Hands Out Yellow Cards for Social Faux Pas in NYC 2014 Emmy Nominees: 8 Snub Shockers Emma Watson Is Va-Va-Voom in Valentino 7 Infamous Sports Blowouts Argentina tops Holland in World Cup semifinals News flush: Japanese toilet exhibition making a splash Emmy Nominations: What to Watch For 'Game of Thrones' Leads 66th Emmy Awards Nominations Photographic 'Proof' That LeBron Is Leaving Miami - @TheBuzzeronFOX Elephant Pool Party at The Oregon Zoo Must-See! Berry and Fallon Form Human Hamster Wheel Pilot buys pizzas for travelers delayed by storm Klose nets record, Germany rout Brazil 7-1