Shaler baseball squad young, but growing
By Jerry Clark
Published: Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
The Shaler varsity baseball team has a new look this season as much of last year's squad has graduated, leaving a slew of raw but talented players to pick up the team.
Searching for its first win of the season, Shaler headed to Plum to face an undefeated team. The game was played in slightly above freezing conditions.
The only things that were hot that afternoon were the bats, and although Plum got its share of hits, Shaler got a few more and edged the Mustangs, 10-8.
“We are a very young team, and this was our first win of the season,” Shaler coach Brian Junker said. “We are don't care about the wins now; we are trying to prepare for section play.”
Junker was pleased to get the first win of the young season. After trailing Plum, 2-0, then 4-2, Shaler scored six runs in the top of the fifth for a lead it wouldn't relinquish.
Down by two runs, third baseman Jimmy Hughes knocked a bases-clearing double to tie the score at 2. Hughes nabbed an unassisted double play in the bottom of that frame to keep the game close.
Justin Mazza hit an RBI double in the top of the fourth before Shaler kicked the game open in the top of the fifth.
Hughes took a walk followed by an RBI double from Matt Carter, then another RBI double by Anthony Zelina.
Sammy Ireland knocked in a run with his single, and Andrew Muller hit a three-run double to keep the pressure on Plum. Hughes knocked in another run before the inning ended, and Shaler led, 10-4, with two innings to play.
Plum made one last surge, scoring four runs in the bottom of the sixth, but Junker went to Ireland, a freshman, to close the game. He didn't disappoint.
Ireland struck out three batters, and although one reached base due to an error, he showed his mettle in a tough situation.
“My team was yelling at me, and that just motivated me,” Ireland said. “I hope this win gives us the momentum we need heading into section play.
“We have been hitting pretty good. We just have some trouble reading fly balls, and we have to clean up the little errors.”
Junker said the win was not pretty, but he'll take it as a confidence booster for a team that played hard.
Starting pitcher Jake Potock, a sophomore, pitched a solid game, striking out five batters and limiting Plum's scoring chances.
Junker was pleased with Ireland's play at second and how he closed the game.
“That kid is going to be a player,” Junker said.
Junker said the play of Muller, a returning starter and strong center fielder, and Hughes at third base will be important as the team develops this season.
Jerry Clark is a sports editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-779-6979 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins stave off Ducks’ shooting barrage to win in shootout
- Penguins notebook: Maatta leaves lasting impression with Selanne
- Pirates seek to tap Alvarez’s remaining upside
- Steelers restructure Brown’s contract to become salary cap compliant
- Oil slicks found in hunt for missing Malaysia jet
- Trade to Penguins caps frenetic period for winger Stempniak
- Gorman: Pitt should be happy with Dixon
- Greensburg woman accused of assaulting nurse in Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital
- Former Pitt coach Majors in stable condition after heart procedure
- Web of surveillance videos helps ensnare suspect in East Liberty slayings
- Man dies in overnight Butler house fire