Kittanning baseball team shut out by Knoch
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Kittanning's players and coaches know their team is hitting the ball better. The Wildcats just need more of their good swings to end up on the field instead of in gloves.
Bad luck and good defense by Knoch led to Kittanning being shut out for the fourth time this season in a 5-0 loss in a Section 5-AAA game at Kittanning Community Park.
Though the Wildcats (1-7, 0-4) finished with only four hits, the team's offense was stifled by two double plays turned by Knoch (4-4, 3-1) and a handful of line drives that went straight to Knights' fielders.
“Those are what we call at 'em balls,” Kittanning coach John Davis said. “We hit the ball well, but we hit it right at 'em.
“The kids are gaining in confidence. Our hitting has been getting stronger the last couple of games, but today we just couldn't get any to fall in.”
Knoch got the offense it needed from Andy Fritz and Caleb Thorn. Fritz drove in the first run of the game in the first inning and later had an RBI double. Thorn had two RBI doubles into the left-field gap for the Knights.
But while the Knights were able to roll balls to the outfield fence, Kittanning's best contact ended up in the center fielder's glove.
“We're definitely starting to make more contact. Now that we're starting to hit the ball more, we need to start hitting gaps and scoring runs,” Kittanning senior shortstop Mitch Pirhalla said.
Wins could come with more offense; the Wildcats were solid in the other aspects of the game.
Christian Miller allowed three runs in four innings in relief, and Jordan Lattanzi relieved him with two scoreless innings. Kittanning had two errors, but neither led to a run being scored.
“I feel like our defense isn't too bad, and our pitching isn't bad, either,” Pirhalla said. “We have a solid team, but our offense is still struggling.”
Though they remain winless in section play, the Wildcats are only three games out of a playoff spot in their six-team section. Though there is time for a push toward the postseason, Kittanning will need its offense to start clicking to make a move.
“Our goal is still to make the playoffs, for sure. We just have to go one step at a time and focus on the little things at the plate,” Pirhalla said.
“There's still six (section games) left, but we've got to get that first win,” Davis said. “This was only our second home game all year, so we get a lot of those teams here in the second half. We know how we need to play to compete with these teams, and it starts (Thursday) when we play Valley.”
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.
- Trib Cup: Greensburg Central Catholic celebrates WPIAL title
- Knoch wins 1st WPIAL title by beating defending champ West Allegheny
- Juniata Valley holds off Blairsville for District 6 baseball title
- Central Catholic knocks off Norwin to win 1st WPIAL baseball title
- High school roundup: Montour edges CV in 9th to earn PIAA berth
- Errors costly for Trojans in WPIAL title game
- Previewing the the 2015 WPIAL baseball championships
- McCombs tosses 1-hitter to lead Serra to PIAA tournament
- Seton-La Salle baseball’s outlook good for next season
- Knoch baseball not content with WPIAL finals berth
- WPIAL finalist Knoch baseball team playing head games at plate