By Ron Poniewasz Jr. and Andrew Petyak
New Castle News
NEW CASTLE —
The Shenango High baseball team remained alive in playoff contention.
The Wildcats rallied from a five-run deficit Saturday to knock off visiting Ellwood City Lincoln in WPIAL Section 5-AA action, 9-8.
Shenango (5-5 section, 8-6 overall) moved 1 1/2 games behind third-place Laurel (6-3, 6-5) for the final playoff berth out of the section. Neshannock (6-4, 9-4) is just a half-game behind the Spartans. The Wildcats were down 8-3 going to the bottom of the fifth.
“Essentially you lose one more, and you’re out of it. We’re going one game at a time,” Wildcats coach Mike Othites said. “I think our attitude is pretty good.”
Trailing 2-0 through two innings, Shenango (5-5, 8-6) picked it up offensively with a run in the third and two runs in the fourth.
The Wolverines (3-7, 4-11) howled back in the fifth with six runs, aided by fielding errors from the Wildcats.
Seth Mley, Justin Vetica, Anthony Joseph and Joseph Ioanilli collected two hits for Ellwood. Vetica added three RBIs while Ioanilli had two.
“We’ve been putting up big numbers offensively lately and we’re getting better,” Wolverines coach Jeff Fotia said.
Down but not out, the Wildcats picked up two runs in the sixth and three runs in the seventh to earn the victory.
Evan Kendall knocked a bases loaded two-RBI single in the final frame to make the deficit one. Kendall was one of two Shenango players with two hits and two RBIs, with Rob Montanari and Anthony Prestopine being the others. Greg DePorzio also notched two of the team’s 10 hits.
An intentional walk of Sam Sibeto led to a game-winning RBI by Prestopine.
“Sometimes we don’t make the plays we need to make or the hits we need to make,” Othites said. “One thing we’ve never done is quit.”
James Brown (1-0) earned the win in relief, allowing one hit and two walks through 2 1/3 innings.
Carrington Bell tossed a gem to lift the Scotties to a nonsection home win over Sharpsville.
Bell (2-2) went the distance, giving up three hits and five walks with 12 strikeouts.
“Carrington pitched well for us,” first-year Union coach Mark Stanley said. “He struggled earlier in the year.
“We’re going to need him the rest of the way. It’s nice for him to get going and get the win for us.”
Joe Salmen and Devan Schuller posted two hits each for Union. The Scotties (8-4) collected 10 total hits.
Union plated two markers each in the second and third innings, adding another tally in the fifth and two more in the sixth.
Central Valley 3
Mohawk held on for a nonsection home win over Central Valley.
The Class AA hosts led 5-2 after five innings and triple-A Central Valley added another marker in the sixth, but got no closer.
“We didn’t hit the ball hard,” Mohawk coach Pam Beatty said. “Anytime you play a triple-A school like that though, a win is big for your team.”
Jaki Bender (10-2) picked up the win. Bender allowed five hits and three runs — one earned — with a walk and three strikeouts.
Leah Woytek paced Mohawk (11-2) with two hits and Lucia Fee added three RBIs.
Wilmington allowed just one Union player to reach base in a nonregion home win. The game was stopped after three innings because of the mercy rule.
Casey Brophy’s second-inning walk accounted for the lone blemish against Lady Greyhounds pitching.
Abby Sotter (10-2) earned the win, working two innings. Sotter gave up no hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Cassidy Marett paced Wilmington (10-2) with two hits and three RBIs, while Chelsea Rogel and Aryn Boyer added two hits and two RBIs apiece for the victors. Alanna Elliott delivered two hits and Kristen Klein contributed two RBIs.
The Lady Greyhounds banged out 13 hits as a team.
Johnna Johnston (1-2) took the loss. Johnston gave up 13 hits and 12 earned runs with six walks and a strikeout.
Union is 5-8.
Wilmington scored eight runs in the first, five in the second and two more in the third.
Madison Shaffer came through at the plate and in the circle, lifting the Lady Lancers to a nonsection home win over Laurel. The game was stopped after six because of the mercy rule.
Shaffer paced Neshannock (13-1) with four hits and six RBIs. Shaffer (13-1) picked up the win as well, tossing six innings, surrendering four hits and five runs — three earned — with five walks and 11 strikeouts.
Jamie Graziani and Marissa DeMatteo delivered three hits apiece for the winners. Rayanna Furst added two hits and three RBIs, while Katie Burrelli posted two hits and a pair of RBIs.
Kristan Fedrizzi suffered the loss. Fedrizzi pitched 5 1/3 innings, giving up 15 hits and 16 runs. She walked four and struck out six.
Erica Latess notched two hits for the Lady Spartans (2-10).
Neshannock scored three runs in the first, four in the third, two in the fourth, one in the fifth and six in the sixth.
Laurel plated a marker in the first to go along with a pair each in the fourth and fifth innings.