Francia walk-off bomb lifts BVA, 8-6
Going into Belle Vernon Area's Section 4-AAA game with Thomas Jefferson, BVA coach Dan Palm said his team could not afford another loss if it planned on going to the WPIAL playoffs.
Thanks to Dom Francia, the Leps jumped back into second place.
Francia drilled a walk-off, two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh inning to give BVA an 8-6 win.
Francia had doubled earlier in the game to stake BVA to an early 1-0 lead.
The win, coupled with Elizabeth Forward's 5-3 loss to unbeaten South Park, moved the Leps (10-6, 6-4) ahead of EF (11-5, 5-4), TJ (9-7, 5-4) and idle West Mifflin (9-6, 5-4).
“This is such a huge win for us,” said Palm. “We talked about all of our games being playoff games from here on out and that's how we are going to treat them one at a time.”
BVA led 6-4 before TJ scored two runs in the sixth tie the game at 6-6, setting the stage for Francia's heroics.
Joining Francia with two hits for the Leps were Matt Callaway and Tyler Frankel, each getting a single and double.
Serra 10, Monessen 0
Monessen may have lost the battle, but winning the war still remains in sight.
The Greyhounds' disastrous sixth-inning that included six bases-loaded walks and a bases-loaded hit batter spurred Serra Catholic's 10-0 six-inning win.
Still, Monessen's playoff hopes remain alive and well.
Wins over oft-beat Geibel and Clairton in two of their final three Section 2-A games will likely be enough for the Greyhounds to qualify for the playoffs.
Monessen (4-9, 3-4) could've made it easier on itself if it could've managed a couple runs off Serra's Wayne Hydak.
Hydak allowed only one hit in five innings to improve to 5-0. Chad Hazaga pitched a perfect sixth inning before Serra exploded in the sixth for eight runs.
Pete Tarka was solid on the mound for Monessen before losing control in the sixth when the rain started. Tarka walked four in a row before giving way to Justice Rawlins, who walked three and hit another.
“Pete was getting tired,” Monessen coach Bill Matush said. “It wasn't raining that hard when the inning started. I understand we have to play. It had nothing to do with the weather.”
Serra (13-1, 8-0) got three hits and two RBI from Hydak and a pair of hits from Parker Janosko as the Eagles clinched at least a share of the section title.
Monessen's only hit was a second-inning single by Tyler Shash.
“We had a couple of chances and couldn't get the big hit,” Matush said. “We just aren't a real good hitting team and we are kind of used to low-scoring games.”
Monessen resumes today at home against Clairton.
Frazier 17, Clairton 2
The Commodores (6-7, 4-4) moved back into sole possession of third place in Section 2-A with the three-inning win.
Frazier pounded out 16 hits with Jaime Fell leading the way with a single, double and triple.
Getting two hits each for Frazier were Nick Smalich, Zach Mastowski, Hunter Clay, Paul Pellick and Jared Rebovich.
One of Clay's hits was a two-run home run.
South Park 5,Elizabeth Forward 3
EF (11-5, 5-4) fell behind 4-1 after three innings in the Section 4-AAA contest.
Ryan Wardropper homered and Matt Diehl doubled for the Warriors.
South Park (17-0, 10-0) got three hits from Shane Fetsko.
Yough 10,Greensburg Salem 0
Josh Sterner went 3 for 4 with an RBI and two runs, and Eric Borkovich added two hits and two RBI, as Yough (8-7, 6-3) won in Section 2-AAA.
C.J. Vargo gave up three hits and struck out five in six innings for the win.