Kittanning baseball team's rally falls short
TribLIVE Sports Videos
It may have been a setback to open section play, but Kittanning showed its ability to battle against Knoch.
The Knights took an early lead, but Kittanning scored two runs and loaded the bases in the seventh inning before falling 6-3 to Knoch in a Section 5-AAA game Wednesday at Kelly Automotive Park in Butler.
Garrett Traggiai drove in runs with a double, single and sacrifice fly for Knoch (3-2, 2-0), which led 4-1 after the first inning. Shawn Shaner drove in two runs for Kittanning (1-3, 0-1).
“The thing about this ball team is, I know they're not going to stop fighting,” Kittanning coach John Davis said. “They're not going to quit, and I have the confidence in them that they're going to battle back every game. Unfortunately, we dug ourselves a bit of a hole early, and we couldn't dig out of it.”
The Wildcats were behind going into the final inning 6-1, but Zane Dudek's second single of the game and a walk on each side of it loaded the bases with no outs.
Knoch sent in pitching ace Gavin Miller in relief of starter Alex Stobert after Dudek's single, but the Wildcats pushed runs across on a fielder's choice by Shaner and an RBI single by Christian Miller. Eli Hickman walked to load the bases again with two outs, but Liam Doms' drive toward the gap in left-center field hung in the air long enough to allow the Knights to get the out.
“It was a good team effort for us. (Kittanning is) a good team. I knew they'd hit the ball well, and their pitchers are crafty,” Knoch coach George Bradley said. “We told our guys to get on top of the ball and don't try to hit home runs. Some of them did, some of them didn't.”
Shaner gave Kittanning a 1-0 lead with an RBI double in the top of the first, but Knoch posted four runs on a sacrifice fly by Zach Junk, a two-run double by Caleb Thorn and an RBI single by Traggiai off Kittanning starter Christian Miller.
Miller allowed five runs in three innings before giving way to two freshmen. Hickman allowed one run in two innings of relief, and Tyler Johnson struck out two in an inning.
“We had two freshmen come in and do a heck of a job,” Davis said. “They're going to get innings, no doubt about that. I told these guys it's going to be pitching by committee a lot of times.”
Matt Grubba is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org 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.