A-K Valley WPIAL baseball playoff capsules: Games for Thursday, May 18, 2023

Wednesday, May 17, 2023 | 2:06 PM

WPIAL baseball playoffs

Class 3A

First round

1-Riverside (17-0) vs. 16-Valley (11-10)

6:30 p.m. Thursday at Seneca Valley

Winner plays: Winner of 8-Freeport (14-5)/9-South Allegheny (12-7) in quarterfinals (time, date, site TBD)

Players to watch: Ashton Schlosser, Riverside; Jacob Staraniec, Valley

Extra bases: Behind 55th-year coach Dan Oliastro — the WPIAL’s all-time winningest coach — Riverside has rolled through the season as the WPIAL’s only undefeated team. The Panthers won the Section 1 title at 12-0 and outscored opponents 174-37 this season. Brothers Mitch and Hunter Gavin combined for 41 RBIs. Schlosser is batting .469 with 16 RBIs, and Bo Fornataro is hitting .447 with 21 RBIs. Hunter Garvin is 4-0 on the mound and boasts a 0.39 ERA. Riverside has won five WPIAL titles, the most recent in 2017. … Valley earned a 6-5 win over Burrell in the preliminary round. Staraniec and Dante Taliani eacdh had two hits. Nico Heakins also had an RBI. Staraniec earned the win after allowing one hit and two earned runs with eight strikeouts in five innings. Heakins earned the two-inning save. The Vikings committed seven errors in the win. The last time Valley reached the WPIAL quarterfinals was in 2021.

8-Freeport (14-5) vs. 9-South Allegheny (12-7)

6:30 p.m. Thursday at Plum

Winner plays: Winner of 1-Riverside (17-0)/16-Valley (11-10) in quarterfinals (time, date, site TBD)

Players to watch: Michael Hanz, Freeport; Dillion Pomaki, South Allegheny

Extra bases: Freeport finished second in Section 3 with a 9-3 record. The Yellowjackets won seven of their last nine games, including splitting series with Shady Side Academy and section champion East Allegheny. Zach Clark hit .518 during the regular season. Hanz helped pace a pitching staff that had a sub-2.00 ERA. Sophomore pitcher Dustin Rape is a Penn State recruit. … South Allegheny was the third-place team in Section 2 with a 6-4 mark. The Gladiators have won six straight games, including five shutouts. They have outscored opponents 39-2 in that span. They also split a section series with No. 2 seed Avonworth. Pomaki leads the offense with a .426 average and 15 RBIs. Jaxson Champ has knocked in 14 runs.

Class 2A

First round

7-Charleroi (12-4) vs. 10-Riverview (9-7)

4 p.m. Thursday at Gateway

Winner plays: 2-Seton LaSalle (14-4) in quarterfinals (time, date, site TBD)

Players to watch: Jake Beveridge, Charleroi; Luke Migely, Riverview

Extra bases: Charleroi finished third in Section 1 with a 9-3 record. The Cougars won five of their last six games, including a split with No. 6-seeded Chartiers-Houston. In their May 9 game, Beveridge was 3 for 4 with a double and RBI, and Nico Rongaus was 3 for 3 wtih two RBIs. Ben Shields tossed a four-hitter with three strikeouts. … Riverview tied for second in Section 3 with an 8-4 record. The Raiders finished the season on a three-game losing streak. They swept section series against Brentwood, Apollo-Ridge and Ligonier Valley. Migely leads the Raiders at the plate with a .550 batting average and .673 on-base percentage with 13 RBIs. Rece Stempfer is hitting .545. Enzo Lio has a 5-1 record on the mound with a 0.90 ERA.

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@triblive.com or via Twitter @BHartlep_Trib.

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