QV pitcher Pilewicz silences Freeport's bats in quarterfinals
TribLIVE Sports Videos
The chatter from Freeport's dugout barely faded during Wednesday's WPIAL Class AA quarterfinal at Fox Chapel even as the Yellowjackets found themselves down by four runs to unbeaten No. 1 seed Quaker Valley.
But the Yellowjackets' bats were silent.
Winning pitcher Jake Pilewicz held Freeport to one hit in Quaker Valley's 6-1 win.
The Quakers advance to the semifinals where they will play No. 4 Deer Lakes (17-3) at a time and location to be determined.
Neither team excelled at the plate. Quaker Valley finished with eight hits, three of which were infield singles. But the victors better utilized their scoring opportunities.
“This is playoff baseball, and you're not going to rip it every time,” Quaker Valley coach Todd Goble said. “We scratched and clawed. We just try to play hard, put the ball in play and run like crazy.”
Quaker Valley (20-0) stranded Clayton Bouchard at third base in the top of the first and third innings.
Freeport (12-4) also squandered a chance to make an offensive splash early. Levi Negley hit a two-out, line-drive single to left field in the top of the first.
Matt Swartz and Damon Smith received free passes to first base as Swartz walked and Smith took a pitch to the batting helmet.
Negley scored during the next at-bat, when, with the bases loaded, Luke Mariotti worked a full count into a walk.
Pilewicz, who pitched a complete game, averted further damage with a strikeout.
Quaker Valley answered Freeport's small-ball tactics with its own base-to-base offense in the top of the fourth when it scored five runs.
Walks put Pilewicz and Ben Utterback on base. Matt Delie drove home Pilewicz with a single to center field. Two more walks followed to load the bases, and Robbie Miller replaced Ethan McCormick on the mound.
Bouchard then beat a throw to first for an infield single that scored Delie and kept the bases loaded. A walk brought Nelson Westwood home, and Aden Pilewicz scored on an infield single by Jake Pilewicz.
Fox Chapel's rubber-lined synthetic-turf field was a target of Freeport's frustration.
“We kind of beat ourselves there,” Freeport coach Chris Graczyk said. “I just don't think we anticipated it being that soft.”
Just chip away at Quaker Valley's cushion, Freeport's players and coaches told one another. But no other Freeport player reached first base until the bottom of the final inning when Josh Beale benefited from a throwing error.
“Our bats just really weren't alive,” senior left fielder Dustin Koedel said. “We could've hit the ball a lot better, and we should've.
“None of us really hung our heads. We realized that we can't hang our heads because if we do, it's game over, so we were still all full of energy. We just didn't get the offense going.”
Bill West is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @BWest_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.
- Steelers notebook: Spence’s future uncertain after reinjuring knee
- Keisel always hoped to return to Steelers
- Rossi: Time with Penguins taught Bylsma importance of stability
- Pitt football team rallies around its youth
- Woman shot dead, mother wounded in Hill District shooting
- Records: Steelers RB Bell admitted smoking pot before traffic stop but denied being high
- Distracted Steelers show nothing in loss to Eagles
- Uniontown PNC Bank robbery suspects surrender
- Hackers hit 25,000 government workers
- NFL could delay punishment
- Time on the bench gets Snider back into Pirates lineup