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D2 BASEBALL: James’ Hit Lifts West Scranton Over Scranton In 11

May 22, 2019

SCRANTON — When Billy James couldn’t get down a bunt in the bottom of the 11th inning, it turned out to be the best thing for West Scranton.

Able to swing away, the sophomore catcher drilled a double to left field, scoring Nick Forsette with the winning run as the No. 4 seed Invaders beat No. 5 Scranton, 2-1, in a District 2-4 Class 6A subregional first-round baseball game Tuesday at Battaglia-Cawley Field.

James’ second double of the game ended a thriller between the city rivals and advances West Scranton (9-11) to Thursday’s semifinals at top-seeded Hazleton Area.

“A game like this, so much on the line, nobody wanted to give in,” West Scranton coach Brian Minnich said.

For nine innings, the game was scoreless, thanks to starting pitchers Tyler Connor for West Scranton and Jason Carpenter for Scranton.

Connor went 6⅔ innings, gave up four hits, one walk and three strikeouts. He had a no-hitter through 4⅓ innings, retiring

11 straight, before Ian Ciocca had an infield single. Jason Ardan followed with another single and Carpenter reached on an error to load the bases.

However, Connor got out of the jam with a 6-4-3 double play.

“His curveball and his two-seam (fastball) was working for him,” James said. “Tyler was great today. He’s our ace. He pitched a gem.”

In the seventh, Ciocca singled with one out and Carpenter walked with two outs to end Connor’s day. Cameron Butka came on, threw one pitch and got a comebacker to end the inning.

Carpenter, meanwhile, went eight innings and allowed eight hits with two walks and eight strikeouts.

Whenever West Scranton threatened, the senior lefty was able to wriggle out of danger. He was aided by a pair of double plays.

“My curveball was on, and my two-seam fastball out and four-seam in were my bread and butter today,” Carpenter said.

Scranton (6-14) literally tried to steal a run in the top of the ninth. Brandon Karp reached on an error, stole second and moved to third on a groundout with two outs. Karp then tried to steal home, but Butka threw to James in time to keep the game scoreless.

“You have to take a chance there,” Scranton coach Jamie Higgins said. “Two outs, that kid (Butka) throwing hard, we were down the bottom of the order, hadn’t been stringing hits together. We had speed on third. It was a good situation to do it.”

Finally, the Knights broke through in the top of the 10th. Carpenter led off and reached on an error. Pinch-hitter Noah Leety sacrificed pinch-runner Wil Walsh to second and Walsh took third on a groundout by Brian Hobbs.

Matt Eckenrode then lined a 1-2 pitch into left field to score Walsh and make it 1-0.

However, West Scranton came back in the bottom of the 10th against Steven Paszek, who relieved Carpenter in the ninth.

Cayden Merrifield led off with a single. Carter Loureiro laid down a sacrifice bunt and when nobody covered third base, Merrifield kept running and made it there safely.

Butka followed with a double to score Merrifield and tie the game at 1.

After Scranton went down in order in the top of the 11th, Nick Forsette drew a leadoff in the bottom of the 11th.

Minnich wanted James to bunt Forsette to second. He failed, but Forsette made it there anyway with a stolen base.

“I told Billy at the beginning of the inning that if Nick gets on, you’re bunting. And he kind of gave me the look like, ‘Uh, oh,’ ” Minnich said. “As he was walking to the plate, I told him to take a strike and see if we can make something happen.

“Then when he didn’t get the bunt down, he’s a phenomenal two-strike hitter. So it worked out great for us.”

James drove a 2-2 pitch over the left fielder’s head to easily score Forsette and touch off a wild celebration by the Invaders.

“I got told to bunt, but I didn’t get it down. Then I got told to swing away,” James said. “It felt really good off the bat. Just watching it I knew it was going to drop down.”

Contact the writer:

swalsh@timesshamrock.com; 570-348-9100, ext. 5109

@swalshTT on Twitter

Scranton West Scranton

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Hobbs cf 5 0 2 0 Merrifield cf 5 1 2 0

Eckenrode lf 5 0 1 1 Loureiro ss 4 0 0 0

Paszek ss-p 5 0 0 0 Butka dh-p 4 0 2 1

Campbell c 5 0 0 0 Connor p 0 0 0 0

Karp dh 5 0 0 0 Ciullo 1b 5 0 2 0

Cobley rf 0 0 0 0 Lewis pr 0 0 0 0

Ciocca 2b-ss 5 0 2 0 Walsh lf 5 0 1 0

Ardan 3b 4 0 1 0 Forsette 3b 4 1 2 0

Carpenter p-1b 3 0 0 0 James c 4 0 2 1

Walsh pr 0 1 0 0 Hamm cr 0 0 0 0

McCrmck 1b-2b 1 0 0 0 Amaya rf 3 0 0 0

Wslwski ph-1b 2 0 0 0 Ivanoff 2b 4 0 1 0

Leety ph 0 0 0 0

Kearney 2b 0 0 0 0

Totals 41 1 6 1 Totals 38 2 12 2

Scranton 000 000 000 10 — 1

West Scranton 000 000 000 11 — 2

No outs when winning run scored

2B: Jake Ciullo (WS), Garrett Walsh (WS), Cameron Butka (WS), Bill James (WS) 2.

Scranton IP H R ER BB SO

Carpenter 8 8 0 0 2 8

Paszek, LP 2 4 2 2 1 1

West Scranton IP H R ER BB SO

Connor 6.2 4 0 0 1 3

Butka, WP 4.1 2 1 0 0 4

Paszek pitched to 2 batters in 11th

Pitch count: SCR: Carpenter 102, Paszek 34; WS: Connor 81, Butka 49

Records: SCR 6-14; WS 9-11

 

Class 2A

A two-out rally in the seventh inning gave No. 3 Montrose a 5-4 win over No. 6 Elk Lake in a District 2 Class 2A first round game.

Andrew Rapisardi started the rally with a double down the left field line. Connor Capwell singled him home and then freshman Connor Watkins followed with a double to the wall to bring home courtesy runner Cade Mooney with the winning run.

Cayden Bennett singled and drove in two runs for Elk Lake.

Montrose will play at Blue Ridge in the semifinals on Friday.

Elk Lake Montrose

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Grosvenor c 3 0 0 0 Page lf 3 0 0 0

Ramey 3b 3 1 1 0 Warriner ss 3 1 1 0

McAleer ss 3 1 0 0 Rpisardi 3b/p 4 1 1 0

Pettyjohn 1b 4 0 0 1 Capwell c 4 1 1 1

McGee dh 2 0 0 0 Watkins 1b 4 1 2 1

Salsman p 2 1 0 0 Hitchcock p 3 1 1 1

Bradish cf 2 1 1 0 Maginley dh 2 0 1 0

Mowry rf 2 0 0 0 Dieck cf 3 0 1 1

Bennett ph 1 0 1 2 Dovin 2b 3 0 0 0

Graham 2b 3 0 0 0

Totals 25 4 3 3 Totals 29 5 8 4

Elk Lake 003 100 0 — 4

Montrose 100 002 2 — 5

Two outs when winning run scored

2B: Andrew Rapisardi (MON), Ethan Hitchcock (MON), Connor Watkins (MON), Caden Ramey (EL).

Elk Lake IP H R ER BB SO

Salsman 6.2 5 3 2 3 6

Pettyjohn, LP 0 3 2 2 0 0

Montrose IP H R ER BB SO

Hitchcock 4 1 3 2 1 7

Rapisardi, WP 3 2 1 1 1 5

Pitches: EL: Salsman 105, Pettyjohn 3; MON: Hitchcock 73, Rapisardi 36.

Records: MON 10-7; EL 6-12.

Blue Ridge 8, Mountain View 7

At Blue Ridge, Tyler Hillard hit a walk-off single to give No. 2 Blue Ridge a win.

Adam Roe led off the bottom of the seventh with a double. After an intentional walk, the runners advanced to second and third on a wild pitch. Mountain View added another intentional walk to load the bases before Hillard’s hit won it.

Cameron DeManicor led No. 7 Mountain View with three hits, including a double, two RBIs and two runs.

Mountain View Blue Ridge

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Ofalt cf 4 0 2 1 McCain 2b 3 2 1 0

DeManicor c 3 2 3 2 Zawiski 1b/p 4 2 2 1

DeWolfe p 3 1 2 0 Roe c 4 2 2 0

Fanelli 3b 3 0 1 1 Goff lf/p 3 1 1 2

Scott 1b 3 0 0 0 Folk p 3 1 3 2

Craven 3b 1 0 0 0 Hillard ss 4 0 1 1

Richmond 2b 3 0 1 2 Koehler 3b 3 0 2 0

Mancuso rf 3 1 0 0 Gudykunst cf 0 0 0 0

DeMark lf 2 2 1 0 Decker dh 3 0 0 0

Henke ss 3 1 1 0 Burchell rf 2 0 0 0

Gumaer rf 0 0 0 0

Totals 28 7 11 6 Totals 29 8 12 6

Mountain View 211 000 3 — 7

Blue Ridge 202 030 1 — 8

No outs when winning run scored

2B: Jeff Zawiski (BR), Cameron DeManicor (MV), Adam Roe (BR).

Mountain View IP H R ER BB SO

DeWolfe 5 10 7 5 0 2

Craven, LP 1 2 1 1 3 0

Blue Ridge IP H R ER BB SO

Folk 3 7 4 4 1 1

Goff 3 1 1 0 0 1

Zawiski, WP 1 3 2 1 1 1

Pitches: MV: DeWolfe 57, Craven 26; BR: Folk 43, Goff 32, Zawiski 32.

Records: BR 10-7; MV 3-16.

Holy Cross 11, Northwest 1

At Washington Street Park, Joe Rossi hit a double and a home run and drove in two to lead No. 4 Holy Cross.

Colin Walsh had a single and a double, two runs and three RBIs for the Crusaders.

David Piestrak had two hits for No. 5 Northwest.

Holy Cross will play at top-seeded Lackawanna Trail in the semifinals on Friday at 4:30 p.m. Lackawanna Trail had a bye in the first round.

Northwest Holy Cross

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Saxe 2b 2 1 0 0 Rohan p/p 2 2 1 2

Piestrak ss 2 0 2 0 Straka 2b 2 1 0 0

Gregory cf 2 0 0 0 Rossi c 3 1 2 2

Antolik lf 2 0 1 1 Mozeleski ss 4 2 3 1

Mott c 2 0 1 0 Hassaj dh 3 0 0 0

Capece 1b 2 0 0 0 Evans 1b 2 2 0 0

Noss 3b 2 0 0 0 Walsh 3b 3 2 2 3

Boyer rf 2 0 0 0 Norella of 0 1 0 0

Pierontoni dh 2 0 0 0 O’Connor cf 2 0 1 2

Ridgely p 0 0 0 0

Totals 18 1 4 1 Totals 21 11 9 10

Northwest 100 00 — 1

Holy Cross 640 01 — 11

Game ended with no outs in fifth—10-run rule

2B: Tyler Mozeleski (HC), Colin Walsh (HC), Joe Rossi (HC). HR: Joe Rossi (HC).

Northwest IP H R ER BB SO

Ridgely, LP .2 4 6 2 2 2

Noss 3.1 5 5 5 6 3

Holy Cross IP H R ER BB SO

Rohan, WP 5 4 1 1 1 5

Pitches: NW: Ridgely 31, Noss 88; HC: Rohan 73.

Records: HC 7-11; NW 5-15.

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