Ford City baseball helps cause in playoff triangle
By Matt Grubba
Published: Saturday, May 4, 2013,
Right now, a Ford City baseball fan's two favorite teams are Ford City and whoever plays against Burrell.
The Sabers did their part to reach the WPIAL playoffs by picking up a six-inning, 10-0 win at home over Summit Academy, but Ford City's hopes of finishing third in Section 3-AA are dependent on Burrell losing one of its final two games next week.
Ford City (6-7, 6-5) needs to finish ahead of Burrell (5-8, 5-5) or in a three-way tie with Apollo-Ridge at 6-6 because of the Bucs' season sweep of the Sabers. But with no say over the outcome, Ford City knows exactly where it stands after defeating Summit Academy (1-12, 1-11).
“Quite frankly, we haven't deserved to make the playoffs. We lost to Burrell twice, and we had our chances to win both times. We're honest with the kids, and they're honest with themselves about it,” Ford City coach Dennis Montgomery said.
“The thing is somebody has to get that spot, and with (Justin) Retzer on the mound for us, who knows what could happen (in a playoff game).”
Burrell hosts Apollo-Ridge on Monday and West Shamokin on Tuesday, which could put Ford City in the position of playing against West Shamokin on Monday then cheering for them the next day.
“If that happens, we'll probably go out to that game and cheer for (West Shamokin),” Ford City pitcher Dave Lattanzio said. “It'll be exciting for us.”
Lattanzio did his part for Ford City as he limited Summit Academy to four hits and struck out nine. The senior also kicked off the offense in his final home game for Ford City with an RBI double in the first inning.
“It feels good to give us a chance, at least, to get in the playoffs,” Lattanzio said. “It would mean a lot to make it. We've never been (in a postseason) in my high school career, and it would be exciting to finally be in one. We've worked hard for it.”
Ford City got offense from the bottom of its lineup to finish the game an inning early.
Mike Fennell had the biggest hit with a two-run triple to right that made the lead 7-0 in the fourth, and Caleb Zablocki, Ashton McGinnis and Zeke Walter hit run-scoring singles to give Ford City at least one RBI from each of its bottom four players in the batting order.
“We had guys contribute today that have struggled during parts of the season,” Montgomery said. “We didn't get a lot of production from the middle of the lineup, so it was good that those guys picked it up for us, and (Lattanzio) was really hitting the plate.”
Summit Academy was hurt by five errors that helped set up Ford City's scoring chances. Summit Academy starting pitcher Chris Harp allowed seven runs in four innings, but only two were earned. Harp also struck out five.
Matt Grubba is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @Grubba_Trib.
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.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.