Vikes drop Dawgs
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TOWER CITY - As the Schuylkill League Division II baseball race starts to encroach upon the finish line, not only is the playoff chase tightening up, but so are the games themselves.
Jarred Matter escaped a bases-loaded jam after coming on in relief with two outs in the seventh inning and working himself into a full count to help Williams Valley preserve a 4-3 victory over rival Tri-Valley on April 28.
Stephen Sedesse scattered five hits through 6.2 innings of work before getting the first two outs of the seventh. Three straight walks loaded the bases, before Matter worked a full count, getting a strikeout looking to end the game.
The Vikings posted a four-spot in the fourth inning, getting an RBI single from Matter, an RBI double from Ben Rautzahn and a two-run double by Trevor Whelski to take a 4-3 lead.
Chase Schaeffer and Billy Wagner each had an RBI in the first inning, and Conrad Opozda connected for an RBI double in the third to give the Dawgs a 3-0 advantage.
U. Dauphin 12
ELIZABETHVILLE - Kyle Glouner had three hits and drove in two runs as the Trojans rolled past the Wildcats in a Tri-Valley League contest in six innings.
Trey Campbell and Peyton Barge added two hits apiece for Upper Dauphin, which scored in every inning but the fifth. Both of Campbell's hits were doubles.
Pine Grove 9
The Schuylkill League Division I playoff chase got a whole lot tighter April 23.
Austin Fick threw a complete-game six-hitter and Jared McCabe and Brian Reichert hit home runs as Pine Grove knocked off Pottsville 9-4 at Steidle Field.
The victory was Pine Grove's fifth straight and moved the Cardinals (9-3, 5-2 D-I) within a half-game of first place. It's the first league loss for Pottsville (6-6, 5-1), which has lost four of its last five games.
Fick, a junior right-hander, overcame a rough start to improve to 4-0 on the season.
Pottsville tallied two runs in the first and two more in the third to build a 4-3 lead, as Travis Blankenhorn and Eli Nabholz each had RBI singles.
Fick, however, didn't allow a hit after the third inning, finishing with six strikeouts. His teammates backed him up, scoring two runs in the top of the fourth to regain the lead, then blowing the game open with four in the sixth.
Steve Zimmerman's RBI single tied the game in the fourth, with the go-ahead run scoring on an error. McCabe hit a solo homer in the sixth, and Reichert later blasted a three-run shot in the same inning.
MIDDLEPORT - Hunter Herb blasted a first-inning grand slam to give the Dawgs a five-run lead, and Hunter Bordner protected that early edge as Tri-Valley held off the Colts for a Division II win at Schuylkill Valley.
Tri-Valley capitalized on several mistakes by Marian to load the bases after Hunter Bordner's RBI double gave the Dawgs a 1-0 lead. Herb made the Colts pay for the miscues with his grand slam to right field.
Marian chipped away at the deficit. Frank Nietz scored on an error in the bottom of the first, K.J. Snerr came across on an error in the second, and Luke Stawick's RBI single plated Josh Inama to make it 5-3.
Pete Baddick's solo home run in the fifth inning pulled the Colts within a run before Bordner closed the door.
U. Dauphin 13
ELIZABETHVILLE - Aaron Cleveland drove in four runs, including a bases-clearing double in the second inning with two outs, to give the Trojans a nine-run lead in a Tri-Valley League rout of the Indians.
Casey Wise followed Cleveland's double with an RBI double for his own, while Matt Deitrich finished with two hits for Upper Dauphin.
Wms. Valley 13
Stephen Sedesse tossed a one-hit shutout, lifting the Vikings to a five-inning Division II rout of the Hilltoppers atop Lawton's Hill.
Sedesse helped himself at the dish with a 3-for-4 performance, knocking in two runs and scoring two runs. Ben Rautzahn, Noah Crisswell and Tim Schorr collected two RBIs apiece for Williams Valley.
Riley White had Nativity's only hit.