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Q-and-A with Lincoln-Way Central's Matt Mikolajczak

12/18/2012, 7:00pm CST
By Tina Akouris takouris@suntimes.com

The 6-foot-3 senior Mikolajczak is the Knights’ shooting guard. In the spring, he serves as a valuable left-handed pitcher in baseball, for which he has already earned a scholarship to Ohio University.

Matt Mikolajczak, Lincoln-Way Central. Fall sports photo day at Andrew High School in Tinley Park, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2012. | Joseph P. Meier~Sun Times Media

When did you decide to take baseball over basketball?
It’s always been my love, so I’ve always known that I wanted to play college baseball. Basketball is just kind of something that I like to do, but it’s not something that I want to do in college.

What was it about Ohio University that attracted you?
Everything seemed to fit when I was down there. It’s a beautiful campus, I liked the coaches and it’s a Division I school. They made a good offer. It was something I couldn’t pass up.

What is MAC (Mid-American Conference) baseball like?
It’s pretty competitive. It’s a mid-major conference. Kent State just went to the College World Series. They have a lot of good baseball.

Left-handed pitchers are rare, aren’t they?
Yes, they are kind of something special. I think it’s a huge advantage in baseball and it draws a lot of attention from college scouts, because there aren’t a lot of us in the high school game. I think this year was a down recruiting class for left-handed pitchers.

What advantage do you have over a hitter?
Hitters don’t see left-handed pitchers often, and the ball is hidden from the batter. They don’t see the ball until later in the motion.

Will you be a starter or a reliever?
My freshman year I’ll probably start in the bullpen. You have to work your way up and prove to the coaches that you can be a starter.

As told to Tina Akouris

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