The newly formed Connellsville Crush, a baseball team in the Tri-State Palomino South League, has experienced its share of narrow losses. On Thursday, the Crush found themselves in a familiar position, as they trailed by a run late in the game.
But this time, Connellsville avoided a loss by scoring a run in the sixth inning and earning a 6-6 tie against the visiting Penn-Trafford Revolution at Connellsville High School.
Clay Hurley singled in Cole Lowman with the tying run to help the Crush avoid another frustrating setback.
A loss would have been tough to take for Connellsville (1-5-1) considering it held a 5-3 lead in the fifth inning only to allow Penn-Trafford (2-0-1) to score three unearned runs against Tyler Domer on a two-out fielding error.
"We've lost three games by one run, and it all comes back to fundamental baseball," Connellsville coach Gregg Lowman said. "But we're competing with some of the bigger teams in our league, and we're starting to come together."
Alex Keslar pitched the first two innings, giving up three runs. Penn-Trafford's Mike Norkus had a run-scoring double in the first, and Carson Seaman knocked in a run with a double in the second to help the Revolution take a 3-0 lead.
But Connellsville came right back with three runs to tie it in the second. Keslar doubled, and Greg Welsh helped the cause with an RBI single.
In the third, the Crush took the lead, as Keslar and Welsh each delivered a run-scoring single to put Connellsville up, 5-3.
Tyler Domer pitched the middle three innings and gave up just one hit. But a couple of walks and a couple of errors in the fifth allowed Penn-Trafford to take a 6-5 lead.
Still, Connellsville bounced back with the game-tying run, and Clay Hurley pitched two scoreless innings to help the Crush earn the tie.
"I'm platooning our pitchers, and I just want them to concentrate on getting six outs for me," Gregg Lowman said, noting that the main objective for this team is to continue to play better baseball as the summer heats up. "We're not putting pressure on any one kid."
A win would have been nice, but after several tough defeats, a tie is a step in the right direction for Connellsville.
"We just have to continue to gel together," Gregg Lowman said.
Connellsville's next game is a doubleheader at Washington on Sunday.