Rain helps Bentworth wash out Serra Catholic
It had all the makings of a pitchers' duel that's not seen very often on the high school level.
Serra Catholic's Alain Girman and Bentworth's Tyler Delval were matching each other pitch-for-pitch Wednesday until Mother Nature decided she had seen enough.
Rain postponed the scoreless game moments before Delval threw a pitch in the bottom of the fourth inning.
“I'll be honest, that game may have went nine innings at 0-0 if it continued,” Serra coach Brian Dzurenda said.
Instead, the timing of the rain proved to be yet another hard-luck break for the stumbling Eagles.
Delval was allowed to return to the mound 24 hours later because he didn't pitch into the fourth, whereas Girman was forced to rest at least a day after his 11-strikeout, four-inning performance Wednesday.
That was all Bentworth (16-1, 11-1) needed to put a cap on the best season in school history with a 4-0 Section 2-A win over Serra.
The Bearcats scored three times in the sixth off reliever Wayne Hydak and added another in the seventh to solidify their bid for the top overall seed in the upcoming Class A playoffs.
“I think this win helps our seeding, or at least I would hope so,” Bentworth coach Dion Jansante said. “I think we have a pretty good section and we have some real good teams and to finish first, hopefully somebody takes notice of that.”
Serra (12-5) finished the regular season in a three-way tie for second place with Chartiers-Houston and OLSH. The five losses are the most in a season for Serra since 2007.
Serra likely will get either the fourth or fifth seed when the pairings are announced today, but Dzurenda knows that won't matter unless he fixes what' been plaguing his team: fundamental flaws.
Serra committed four errors yesterday in three innings to go with two the day before. The Eagles had base-running blunders and routine fly balls that turned into hits. All four of Bentworth's runs were unearned yesterday.
“We are going to have a great defensive practice on Saturday, I will tell you that,” Dzurenda said. “We are going to be down here a good three hours and go back to the basics. We are going to go back to Day 1 practice. We are going to go back to the March 5 practice schedule and we are going to run it just like it was Day 1.”
Bentworth got all the runs it needed in the sixth when Nick Smydo lofted a two-out singled into left that scored Justin Wiltrout and Bill Simpson to make it 2-0. Trevor Wood followed with a single to make it 3-0.
It was made possible by a botched pickoff attempt at first base.
“Admittedly, we had a lot of kids out of position, but it is fundamental stuff,” Dzurenda said. “But we left too many guys on base, we had their pitcher on the ropes twice and we let him off the hook. You can't do that against quality teams.”
Delval continued to be dominant despite pitching back-to-back days. He gave up two singles yesterday and struck out five over the final four innings to pick up the win.
“We gift wrapped it and handed it to them,” Dzurenda said. “They are taking pictures like they just won the WPIAL championship, which they should be the odds-on favorite to do. They are a very good ball club.”
Mark Kaboly is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.