WPIAL Baseball Recaps From Tuesday, May 17th

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016 | 12:51 AM


Day Two of the WPIAL baseball Playoffs saw the conclusion of the First Round with a pair of Quad-A, eight Double-A and seven Single-A contests. The underdogs enjoyed the day as six lower seeds pulled off victories to advance, including a pair of #14-seeds. Here are recaps from the 17 high school baseball playoff games that put a wrap on Round One.

A special thanks to Don Rebel, Steve Nagler, Jason Tennant, Jake Holmes, Kyle Dawson, Chris Lackner, James Dotson, Sean Meyers, Mark Schaas, Bob Gregg, Ed Troup, Greg Kuntz for their help on these recaps.

WPIAL CLASS AAAA First Round:

Plum Mustangs 4 – Woodland Hills Wolverines 0 
The top-seed and undefeated Plum Mustangs jumped out to a four run lead seven batters into the bottom of the first inning, then cruised to a 4-0 victory over the Woodland Hills Wolverines for their 20th win of the season and a spot into Round Two of the Class AAAA playoffs. The game pitted two big right handers in Zach Nolan for Plum and Pitt recruit Jake Jessell for Woodland Hills. But it was the Mustangs bats that came up big early in this one. Liberty recruit and potential MLB first round draft pick Alex Kirrillof laced a double to the left center field fence to lead off the bottom of the first. One out later, Alex Terrell walked and then Ethan Winesburg launched a shot over the left field fence to quickly make it 3-0 Plum. The Mustangs weren’t finished though as Nolan walked and his courtesy runner Jason Maltose stole second and scored one out later on a single by Nick Frazetta as Plum led 4-0. that would mark the end of the offense for the Mustangs though against Jessell, who shut the door the rest of the game allowing only one hit and two walks the next five innings. But the four run lead is all Plum would need as the combination of the senior Nolan and sophomore lefty Ryan Kircher kept the upstart Wolverines off the scoreboard. Nolan piched 5 2/3 innings and yileded five hits with no walks and 5 strikeouts while Kircher pitched the final 1 1/3 allowing only one hit with one strikeout. Woodland Hills turnaround season ends with a final record of 9-8 while Plum improved to 20-0 and will face Peters Township in the Quad-A Quarterfinals on Thursday.

Peters Township Indians 1 – Fox Chapel Foxes 0 
A great pitchers duel that was scoreless into the seventh innings ended on one wild pitch in an opening round thriller at West Mifflin High School as Peters Township edged Fox Chapel in the #8 vs #9-seed in the Quad-A baseball brackets Tuesday afternoon. Both Eric Riotti and Jacob Pilarski were locked in a scoreless tie when the Indians Matt Waigand and Riotti hit back to back singles to lead off the top of 7th inning. They were only the third and fourth hits for Peters Township off Pilarski. Ethan Young flied to right field as pinch runner Boomer Kemp tagged and went to third base. With runners on the corner and Blake Smith at the plate, Pilarski unleashed a wild pitch on an 0-2 pitch that allowed Kemp to score the go-ahead run. In the bottom of the 7th, Patrick Monteverde hit a one out double, but Riotti got Josh Kieffer to pop out to second base and struck out Zach Burkhart to end the game. The punch out was only the second of the game for Riotti, who did not retire the Foxes in order once as FC stranded nine runners on base, six in scoring position. Riotti walked two and allowed six hits in the complete game win. Pilarski, the tough luck loser, allowed one run on four hits with two walks and seven strikeouts in seven dominant innings of work. Fox Chapel’s season ends at 14-6 while Peters Township improves to 13-7 and will face top-seed Plum in the Quarterfinals on Thursday.

WPIAL CLASS AA First Round:

Neshannock Lancers 2 – Charleroi Cougars 1 
Neshannock hurler Frank Fraschetti is one of the top five winningest pitchers in WPIAL history, but it was his opponent on the hill who nearly stole the show in the first round of the Class AA playoffs. Charleroi junior lefty Josiah Fisher matched Fraschetti pitch for pitch throughout the contest, and nearly led the 16-seed Cougars to one of the biggest upsets in WPIAL baseball history.  Both Fraschetti (0.65 ERA, 51 Ks) and Fisher (0.88 ERA, 85 Ks) came out firing on all cylinders, combining to strike out 9 of the first 12 batters in the game. The defending WPIAL and PIAA champion Lancers struck first when Rich Serignese’s sacrifice fly scored Mike Nuzzo in the bottom of the third. Neshannock’s threat ended when Josh Gray was caught trying to steal third, the second consecutive inning where a Lancer inning ended with a runner trying to swipe third base. Fraschetti had held Charleroi to a single hit through five innings, but the a Cougars caught two-out lightning in the bottom of the sixth. Three straight hits from Sam Miceli, Josh Mavilla, and Sam Pager knotted the score at 1-1.  The Cougars would leave two men stranded in the inning, and five total left on base in the game (all stranded in scoring position). In the bottom of the seventh, Emilio Rodriguez led off with a walk. Fraschetti followed with his second hit of the game. After a Dante DeLillo sacrifice bunt advanced the runners, Charleroi intentionally walked Nuzzo to load the bases. Josh Gray attempted a suicide squeeze, but could not lay down the bunt and Rodriquez was tagged out on the plate. On the very next pitch, a wild pitch got away from Cougars catcher Joe Mavilla, and courtesy runner Jared Staph’s head-first slide beat the throw to the plate. Fisher finished allowing only two runs, both unearned, on four hits with 7 strikeouts for the young Charleroi squad, who wrap up the year with an 11-8 record. Fraschetti also allowed four hits and struck out 11 batters. He also led the way offensively as the only player on either team with a multi-hit game. The Lancers (17-2) will continue their quest to repeat as WPIAL champions, advancing to the quarterfinals to face Shady Side Academy.

Shady Side Academy Indians 5 – Chartiers-Houston Buccaneers 2
Section 3 champion Shady Side Academy was the lone survivor from Sections 1, 2 and 3 on the first day of the WPIAL Class AA baseball plyaoffs as they beat Chartiers-Houston 5-2 at the Burkett Complex in Robinson Township on Tuesday. Nick Tarasi drove in one of the runs for the Indians, but did most of his damage on the mound as he pitched a complete game. SSA jumped out to an early lead by scoring four runs in the first inning thanks in part to a two run triple by Ben Kosbie. Shady Side Academy improves to 11-8 and will now face top-seed Neshannock in the Quarterfinals on Thursday. The Section 2 runner-up Buccaneers see their season end at 14-6. 

Shenango Wildcats 5 – Avonworth Antelopes 0 
The Shenango Wildcats came into the post-season with a sub-.500 record but that didn’t stop them from recording one of the biggest upsets of the opening round of the WPIAL Baseball playoffs. The Wildcats got a terrific pitching performance from senior Cody Wolthers who scattered five hits over seven innings. Wolthers didn’t walk an Avonworth hitter all day long and struck out one. Shenango would get all of the runs that they’d need in the 5th inning. Hunter Waskin led off the inning with a double to left-center field. Hayden Guemble then laid down a sacrifice bunt that turned into a 3-base error, allowing Waskin to score the first run of the game. Kyle Campbell then followed with an RBI infield single that hit off of Avonworth starter Brach Herzig’s glove which scored Guemble. Campbell would come around to score a couple of outs later when Ron Esposito would line a base bit into left field. The Wildcats would complete the scoring in the 7th as Ryan Perretti and Esposito both singled with two out and both came in to score on the double by Vince Turco. Antelopes starter, Herzig, pitched well in defeat, surrendering 5 hits in the six innings he pitched. Only one of the three runs chafed against Herzig were earned. Shenango (10-10) heads to the quarterfinal round and awaits the winner of Brownsville and Seton LaSalle.

Seton-LaSalle Rebels 13 – Brownsville Falcons 6 
Double digit seeds had some success in the 2016 WPIAL baseball playoffs prior to the 12-seeded Rebels of Seton La Salle playing the number-5 seed and Class AA section 2 champion Brownsville Falcons. When the final out was recorded at Mount Pleasant High School after more than two and a half hours of play, another double digit seed scored an upset in the first round, with the Rebels winning 13-6. Brownsville jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first before Seton La Salle’s bats came into the action. The Rebels scored four runs on five hits in the second inning against Brownsville starter Mason Kelly to take a 4-1 lead to the third. The top of the third started with a fly out but then the Rebls’ six-hitter, Nick Krugh reached via an error by the Brownsville second baseman and then the next hitter reached on an error by the third baseman, and a throwing error allowed Krugh to move up. The three errors and five hits after that resulted in an eight-run inning for Seton La Salle, with all of the runs unearned against Brownsville’s pitchers, Kelly, and Dylan Brosky, who was charged with five of those runs, only recording one out in relief. Brownsville would add a run in the third, two in the fifth to avoid the mercy rule, and two more in the sixth. The 13th run for the Rebels came in the fourth inning. Nico Popa got the win after throwing 4.1 innings, giving up two earned runs (four total) on six hits while walking five. Popa, Andrew Lease, Liam Sweeney, David Menoskey and Justice Muszynski all chipped in multiple RBI in the win that moves the Rebels to 11-5 overall. Brownsville, with the loss, drops to 15-5 to end the year, while Seton La Salle moves on to play in a 12-13 matchup with the Wildcats of Shenango, who defeated #4 Avonworth 5-0, on Thursday at a site and time to be determined. The game will be here on the exclusive home for the WPIAL baseball playoffs, the MSA Sports Network.

Riverside Panthers 10 – New Brighton Lions 0 
Mike Boswell tossed a 1 hitter and fanned 10 as the 2nd seeded Panthers made short work of the Lions at Chippewa Park. Boswell retired the first 10 hitters he faced before allowing a 1 out singlr yo Justin Francona. The senior was asked about his success, he said being so familiar with some of the Lions hitters helped. Boswell was able to spot his curve all day, keeping New Brighton off balance. The Panthers jumped on starter and losing pitcher RJ Debo in the first for 2 runs and took advantage of 4 New Brighton errors. Riverside blew the game open with a 3 rub 3rd, helped by a RBI double by Ricky Wass. Dylan Speicher led Riverside with 3 of the Panthers 11 hits. Boswell and Braden Bentel each had 2 hits. Riverside is now 17-2 overall. New Brighton ends the season at 10-8.

Steel Valley Ironmen 9 – West Shamokin Wolves 5 
Steel Valley got offensive production throughout their lineup in their 9-5 victory over West Shamokin on Tuesday. The teams traded runs in the second after a quick start to the contest. In the top half of the inning Eli Frailey opened the scoring for the Wolves by way of an RBI groundout. The Ironmen answered back in their half of the stanza after a Mike Sullivan RBI groundout and a few defensive miscues by West Shamokin. The Ironmen continued to tack on to their lead in the middle innings, adding two runs in the third virtue of more errors and RBI’s from Ray Chuba and Alex Ligeros in the fourth making the score 6-2 halfway through. The fifth inning was stolen by the great performance of left handed pitcher of Steel Valley, Tanner Cannon who sat the Wolves down in order and then eventually knocked in the seventh run of the afternoon on an RBI single. Cannon reached base safely after all four of his plate appearances. West Shamokin showed their resiliency in the sixth. After having two on and two outs, Eli Frailey knocked in his second and third RBI’s of the game on a deep fly ball that got past the Steel Valley outfielders and resulted in a double to make the score 7-4. The game became very interesting entering the bottom of the sixth, however the Ironmen put two across the plate on a Mike Sullivan single to put the game away. The Wolves managed to put another run on the board, however it wasn’t enough and the Ironmen advance to the quarterfinals. Despite solid efforts by West Shamokin pitchers Ben Vicini and Devin Fairman, the defensive miscues were a large difference in a game that featured its share of unearned runs. On the other hand, Tanner Cannon of Steel Valley had a very good outing, allowing only six hits.

Beaver Fals Tigers 8 – Quaker Valley Quakers 4 
The 7-9 Tigers took an early lead and made it hold up behind Duante Hill, who tossed a complete game in Beaver Falls first playoff game since winning a WPIAL title in 2010. Beaver Falls blew open a 1 all score in the 4th with a 4 run inning and tacked on 3 more in the 6th on a Dalton Cleckley bases clearing double. Quaker Valley tied for the Section 1 title but could not get the offense on track until the 7th when the Quakers loaded the bases and scored 4 off a tiring Hill. QV had the tying run at the plate but Yendar Almanzar flied out to center to send the Tigers to the quarterfinals. Hill allowed 6 hits and walked 6, he fanned 7. Peyton Russoniello and Nic Saladino each had 2 hits for the Quakers, who end the season at 13-4.

Keystone Oaks Golden Eagles 5 – Burrell Buccaneers 0 
Led by the dominant performance of pitcher Nick Riggle, Keystone Oaks ousted Burrell 5-0 in the Class AA first-round matchup at Fox Chapel High School. While Riggle kept the Buccaneers in check for the majority of the contest, the Golden Eagles’ struggled at the plate until the fourth inning, when they scored three times. Tim Ali opened the inning with a double, and Ryan Roell delivered a one-out RBI single to plate the first run of the game. Dylan Procopio followed with a double to center that plated Roell’s pinch-runner, Joe McCarthy. An error by Burrell with two outs allowed Procopio to score, as well. The No. 6 Golden Eagles added two more runs in the next stanza, as Roell belted a double that plated Riggle and Ali. That was all that Riggle needed, as he tossed a complete game three-hitter, striking out seven batters. Dean Edwards took the loss for the Bucs, although he pitched admirably, especially through the first three innings, when he stifled the KO attack. While the season comes to an end for No. 11 Burrell, Keystone Oaks advances to the quarterfinals, where it will face Beaver Falls.

WPIAL CLASS A First Round:

Bishop Canevin Crusaders 8 – Rochester Rams 0 
The Bishop Canevin Crusaders (10-6) sent 11 batters to the plate, scored seven runs on four hits and capitalized on four Rochester errors in the bottom of the sixth inning on Tuesday night in a First Round WPIAL Class A playoff win, 8-0. The eighth seeded Crusaders were led by pitchers Sam Smallhoover, Tyler Lampus and Justin Dex, who combined for the seven hit shutout. All three pitchers combined to strikeout 13 Rochester players in the win. The ninth seeded Rams (9-8) also had a strong start by junior pitcher Tyler Vargon, who before being pulled from the game in the sixth inning had 11 strikeouts. The Crusaders next play top seeded Greensburg Central Centurions (13-3) in the WPIAL quarterfinal round.

Union Scotties 12 – Carmcihaels Mighty Mikes 7 
In a game that started out a little slow, once the bats woke up, particularly for the Union Scotties, the runs kept on coming. Union picked up a first round playoff win over Carmichaels, 12-7 at Burkett Complex in Robinson Township.  The first time through the order for both teams was rather uneventful and both teams would lead off the third with the top of their respective batting orders. The Mighty Mikes were the first to strike when Reed Long, who led off the inning with a single, would later score on a wild pitch. Then an RBI single by Jacob Wamsley gave the Mikes a 2-0 lead. The Scotties were quick to answer with 4 runs in the bottom half of the inning. After a stikeout, Union had 6 straight batters reach base successfully with a walk and 5 hits including a 2-run double by Tim Sumner. Carmichaels was able to tie it up in the top of the fourth after Jacob Kinsell singled and eventually scored on an error and Wamsley, with a sacrifice fly, drove in Long, who had doubled. From that point on though Union would put up 7 unanswered runs with three runs in the fourth and 4 in the fifth. In that fifth inning, Union’s first 4 batters hit successfully with Joe Gunn capping that streak with a 2-run double.  Gunn would later score and the Scotties led 11-4. The Mikes did get 3 in the top of the sixth when Spishock hit a 3-run inside-the-park homerun but the comeback fell well short and Union added one more in the bottom of the sixth. The only time either team went down in order was when Matt Costello shut down the Mikes in order in the seventh to end the game. The win went to Randy Dejohn who struck out 3 in 4 innings of work. Kinsell took the loss despite striking out 10 before being lifted in the fifth. Union moves on to the quarterfinals to face Our Lady Of Sacred Heart.

Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Chargers 10 – Jeannette Jayhawks 2 
After squandering opportunities in the first two innings, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart sent 10 batters to the plate in the third, scoring six runs in the frame on the way to a 10-2 victory over Jeannette.  The Jayhawks plated an unearned run in the top of the second, taking advantage of an error, a base hit from Seth Howard, and Tre Cunningham’s sacrifice fly.  Four of the Chargers first six batters had singles, but two unforced runners retired on the bases left OLSH down 1-0 coming to the plate in the bottom of the third.  Dom Davis reached on an error.  Adam Pace singled to left and hustled into second on the throw.  Patrick Brogan’s basehit scored both.  Kiefer Bishop doubled to score Brogan, chasing Jeannette starter Michael Pompei.  Dylan Osheka greeted reliever Blaze Tran with a single then stole second.  Mike Roussey’s base hit drove in Bishop and took second on the throw.  Dante Trombetta and Luke Gapinski each put down sacrifice rbi bunts as the Chargers scored six times on five hits.  OLSH (17-3) added two more in the fourth.  Pace doubled and Brogan walked.  Both moved up on a wild pitch.  Bishop grounded out, scoring pace.  Osheka’s sacrifice plated Brogan.  Swade Redman singled with two out in the Jeannette fifth, stole second and scored on Eric Hall’s single.  The Chargers closed the scoring with two in the sixth.  Pace walked, was singled to second by Brogan.  A wild pitch set up Bishop’s two-run single, giving him four RBI in the game.  OLSH banged out 13 hits in the win, three each by Pace and Bishop.  Osheka got the complete-game win, allowing two runs, one earned on five hits while striking out five.  The Chargers will take on Union in the quarterfinals.

Serra Catholic Eagles 10 – Springdale Dynamos 0 
The WPIAL Class A Playoffs began on Tuesday for the #15 Springdale Dynamo as they traveled to Mt. Pleasant to take on the #2 Serra Catholic Eagles. From the outset, Serra sophomore Ben Visnesky was dominant. Visnesky faced two over the minimum in the 10-0 mercy rule shorten game. Singles by Springdale’s Josh Lepish and Dante Mahlmeister were Visnesky’s only blemishes on his pitching line. He finished with 9 strikeouts. The offense for the Eagles was fueled by timely hitting and a lot of self-inflicted errors by the Dynamo. Multiple errant pickoff throws and a few errors spelled demise for the #15 seed. The Eagles have a quick turnaround as they now face the #10 Sewickley Academy at a site and time to be determined on Thursday.

Sewickley Academy Panthers 4 – Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic Trojans 3 
At North Allegheny High School in Boys class A WPIAL first round playoff action, the Sewickley Academy Panthers win a hard fought battle over the Cardinal Wuerhl North Catholic Trojans by a score of 4-3. The Trojans scored 2 runs on two hits and 2 walks in the first inning to lead 2-0. Calin Gribbin had the big  2 RBI single. The Panthers would turn a double play to get out of the inning or it could have been a lot worse. Sewickley Academy would plate a run in the top of the second. A walk, an error, and an RBI single by Derek Littlefield made it 2-1. CWNC would retake a 2 run lead with a solo run in the 2nd. Two singles and a double steal followed by a wild pitch scored Tyler Elwood to make it 3-1. Into the middle innings Panther starter Joe Straka settled down, he would allow only  5 base runners in the final 5 innings, but Trojan starter Joe Alampi started to struggle. Sewickley would score 2 runs in the 4th inning to tie the game at 3-3. Two singles, and 2 walks, plus a sacrifice fly RBI, and RBI ground out would plate the runs for the Panthers. With the game tied at 3-3, CWNC would bring in their ace Erick Taylor. He would shut down the Panthers until the top of the 7th. A lead off error, a walk, and after one out an RBI single by John Delvecchio would give them the run they needed to take a 4-3 lead. Straka would make easy work of the Trojans in the 7th to get the win. He retired  the final 8 batters in the game to finish strong. He struck out 3, walked 4, giving up only 6 hits in 7 innings pitched. Every Panthers Batter reached base at least once, with Tommy Lasorda reaching 3 times on 2 walks and a single, and scoring 2 of the runs. Cardinal Wuerhl ends their season at 13-7 in disappointing fashion after earning a tie for the section 4 single A crown. Sewickley Academy improves to 9-4 on the season and will move on to the quarterfinals against the number 2 seed the Serra Catholic Eagles on Thursday May 19th at a site and time to be determined.

Brentwood Spartans 4 – California Trojans 2 
Boyce-Mayview Park provided the backdrop for a major upset in the Class A Boys Baseball bracket as the #14-seeded Brentwood Spartans upended the #3-seeded and heavily favored California Trojans, 4-2.  Both teams were able to plate runs in the 1st inning.  Brentwood struck first as Brandon Mayfield led off with a single.  He scored on an RBI single by Easton Klein to take a 1-0 lead.  In the bottom half of the inning, the Trojans responded as with 2 outs, Mayfield issued free passes to both Loudon Conte and Alex Adams.  RBI singles by both Casey Zajicek and Enzo Mariscotti drove them both in to give Cal a 2-1 advantage.  The game became a bit of a pitchers’ duel in innings 2 through 4 as both teams held each other off the board.  After giving up a 1-out single in the 2nd, Cal starter Brandon Powell seemed to find a groove as he retired 8 straight Spartans’ batters.  Despite walking 7 Trojans’ hitters throughout the game, Mayfield only gave up one hit after the first inning.  However the bottom fell out for Powell and the Trojans in the 5th inning.  Sully Conway led off with a single, and he stole 2nd.  That was followed by a walk by Cam Lipiello.  3 batters later, Tanner Klein’s and Sean McLaughlin’s back-to-backbase hits drove in Conway, Lipiello, and Klein and chased Powell from the game, giving a 4-2 lead to the Spartans.  After giving up a 1-out walk in the 7th, Mayfield was relieved on the mound by Tanner Klein.  He got the final 2 outs to seal the win and a berth in the Class A Quarterfinal Round.  The Brentwood Spartans move on to face the Vincentian Royals, who edged the Bentworth Bobcats, 2-1, in 9 innings on a bases-loaded walk.  Cal’s season comes to a disappointing end at 17-3.  Brentwood’s record now stands at 10-6.

Vincentian Academy Royals 2 – Bentworth Bearcats 1 in 9 Innings
Kyler Fedko drew a two-out, bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the ninth, giving Vincentian Academy a 2-1 win over Bentworth.  James Seskey singled up the middle to open the winning frame, and was sacrificed to second by Mark Yakim.  Aiden Thomson followed with a hard-shot single to short.  Ty Mitchell gave way on the mound for Hunter Neely.  After a foul out, Mark Cyterski walked to load the bases.  Neely threw three straight high pitches to Fedko, got a couple strikes and Fedko fouled off three 3-2 pitches before Neely missed low and away, walking in the winning run. The Royals tied the game in the bottom of the seventh inning to force bonus baseball.  Trailing 1-0 going to the final inning, the Royals took advantage of three Bentworth errors to tie the game.  After one out, Yakim reached on an misplayed grounder to short.  Thomson bunted into force play, then moved to second on a wild pitch.  Christian Fedko’s grounder to second was dropped, putting runners on the corners.  Cyterski hit a two-hopper to third, but Josh Hughes’ throw to first was off the mark, allowing Thomson to score, tying the game.  The Bearcats (12-7) loaded the bases with nobody out in the fifth, Riley Nickeson scoring when Neely drew a one-out, bases-loaded walk.  Robbie Schultz grounded into a 6-2-3 double-play to end the threat.  Bentworth did not have another hit and only two additional base-runners. Cyterski got the win, working the final three scoreless innings, striking out three.  Garret Barto worked the first six innings, allowing just one run on four hits.  The Royals’ starter picked off two runners in the Bentworth third, snuffing out a promising two-on, one-out start to the frame.  Mitchell took the loss despite holding Vincentian (15-6) to just one hit through regulation. All told, Mitchell worked 8.1 innings, allowing two runs, one earned on three hits, two walks , a hit-batter and striking out a pair.  Vincentian will face Brentwood in the quarterfinals.

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