LEWISBURG — Athens outhit Lewisburg, 10-1, but the Green Dragons took
advantage of base on balls, and three costly errors early in the game to
pull out a 5-3 win here Saturday in the quarterfinals of the District
4, Class AAAA baseball playoffs.
“Our nerves were up in the first couple innings, and it took us some time to settle down with walks and defensive miscues,” said Athens coach Charlie Havens. “Mason (Lister) and Lucas (Kraft) did a good job not allowing the big inning, but the runs left us playing catch up all day.
“The hardest pill to swallow was we outhit Lewisburg, 10-1. We just couldn’t get that clutch hit to create the big inning,” noted Havens in reference to the Wildcats leaving 10 runners on base, including six in scoring position.
“Hats off to (Lewisburg pitcher Forrest) Zelechoski, who really settled down late,” added Havens. “It was even more impressive to do it in this heat.”
After Lewisburg ace Forrest Zelechoski pitched around a two-out single by junior Cam Sullivan in the top of the first inning, the Green Dragons scored two runs in the home half of the inning without the benefit of a hit, taking advantage of two walks, an error, and an errant throw on a dropped third strike to take a 2-0 lead.
The Wildcats closed the gap to 2-1 in the top of the second inning on a two-out double by senior Kaden Setzer, and an RBI single by senior J.J. Babcock.
Lewisburg added another unearned run in the bottom of the second, but it could have been a much bigger inning.
After an error and consecutive walks loaded the bases with no outs, Kraft recorded a strikeout, but a flyball that resulted in a double play allowed a run scoring before the third out was recorded to give Lewisburg a 3-1 lead.
Athens again trimmed the deficit in the top of the third inning.
Senior Karter Rude led off with a double, and moved to third on an error off the bat of junior Caleb Nichols. Cam Sullivan drove home a run with an RBI single to make it 3-2, but Zelechoski retired the next three batters to escape further damage.
Shea Girton led off the bottom of the third with a single — Lewisburg’s only hit, and eventually scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Zelechoski to push the lead to 4-2.
The Wildcats took advantage of a Lewisburg miscue in the fourth as Setzer reached second on an outfield error to lead off the inning. Babcock followed with an RBI single to close the gap to 4-3.
Rude laced a one-out single to center field to put runners on first and second, but the next two Wildcat batters were retired.
The Green Dragons used a pair of walks, and a double steal to add an insurance run in the bottom of the fourth inning, and extend their lead to 5-3.
Junior Jaren Glisson singled with two outs in the fifth inning, and Rude reached on an error with two outs in the sixth inning, but neither advanced past first base.
In the top of the seventh inning, Sullivan led off with a single, but was replaced on the base paths by junior Mason Lister on a fielder’s choice.
Junior Lucas Kraft singled to put runners on first and second, but Zelechoski induced a fly ball to right field, which allowed pinch-runner Josiah Stringham to tag and take third base, and a groundout to end the game.
Sullivan singled three times and drove in one run, while Babcock singled twice and scored two runs, and Rude doubled and singled, and scored one run to pace Athens at the plate.
Setzer doubled and scored two runs for the Wildcats, while Kraft and Glisson each added a single
Kraft was tagged with the loss, allowing four runs — all unearned — on one hit, while striking out three and walking four in three innings.
Lister relieved and allowed one run, while walking four and striking out three.
The Wildcats end the season at 12-9.
“We all wanted to play a few more for the seniors,” said Havens. “That last game is always a tough one to get over.
“(Kaden) Setzer, (Karter) Rude, and J.J. Babcock all had hits,” he noted. “It was obvious they didn’t want to be done.
“They will forever be my first group and will surely be missed,” added Havens. “All had amazing high school athletic careers. I’m looking forward to watching them play different sports at the next level.”
SCRANTON — Sayre poured nine runs across the plate in the second inning
to erase an early deficit en route to a 15-3 five-inning win over Athens
here Sunday afternoon at PNC Field.
The Wildcats took advantage of two errors after a one-out single by junior Caleb Nichols to load the bases. With two outs, junior Jaren Glisson stroked a two-run single to right field to take an early 2-0 lead.
The Redskins struck back quickly in the top of the second inning.
David Northrup led off with a triple to deep center field, and scored on an RBI single up the middle by senior Kannon VanDuzer to close the gap to 2-1.
After walks to junior Jackson Hubbard, and senior Mason Houseknecht the Redskins had the bases loaded with one out. An RBI single by senior Oakley Gorman tied the game at 2-2, and a wild pitch gave Sayre the lead for good, at 3-2.
With two outs, three consecutive errors by the Wildcats allowed runs to score, giving Sayre a 7-2 lead.
Sayre loaded the bases again on a walk to Hubbard, and added runs on a walk to senior Dom Fabbri, and an RBI single by Houseknecht to make it 9-2.
The Redskins added two runs in the third inning by Northrup to extend their lead to 11-2.
Sayre added five runs — all with two outs — in the fifth inning in a rally highlighted by a two-RBI double by junior Kegan Hayford, and an RBI single by senior Josh Arnold to make it 15-2.
Senior Karter Rude led off the home half of the fifth inning with a single, and scored on an RBI double by Nichols, but Sayre starter Luke Horton retired the next three batters, including a strikeout for the game’s final out.
Lucas Horton earned the win for the Redskins, allowing three runs — one earned — on six hits, while striking out 11 without a walk in five innings.
Northrup tripled and singled, scored two runs, and drove in two runs, and VanDuzer singled twice, scored three runs and had one RBI to pace Sayre’s 10-hit attack, while senior Brayden Horton tripled and scored two runs, and junior Zach Garrity doubled and scored two runs.
Hayford doubled, scored one run, and had two RBI in the win, while Houseknecht and Gorman each singled, scored one run, and drove in one run, Arnold singled and drove in one run, Fabbri drove in one run, and Lucas Horton, Hubbard and sophomore Tanner Green each scored one run.
Nichols doubled and singled, scored one run, and had one RBI to lead Athens at the plate, while Glisson singled and drove in two runs, Rude, and junior Cameron Sullivan each singled and scored one run, and senior J.J. Babcock added a single.
Sayre improves to 17-2 and will host Troy Monday in the season finale, while Athens wraps up the regular-season campaign at 12-8.
ATHENS — Junior Lucas Kraft pitched a complete-game, and drove in the
winning run in the sixth inning to lead Athens to a 2-1 win over Watkins
Glen / Odessa-Montour here Friday afternoon in non-league baseball
“Luke Kraft came out in full control tonight,” said Athens assistant coach Andy Podolinski. “He pounded the strike zone and was hitting his locations. He was in control from the first inning and controlled the game.
“You could tell in warm-ups he was locked in,” noted Podolinski. “His velocity was up today, and he was locked in. He dominated the game today and it was fun to watch.
“The kid has worked hard and it’s fun to be a part of watching him and the team grow,” added Podolinski. “Absolutely his most dominate performance of the season, and we’re coming together at the perfect time.”
Kraft allowed one run on five hits, while striking out 10 and walking one in a seven-inning performance to earn the win.
After five scoreless innings, the Seneca Indians pushed a run across the plate on a double by Daniel Lewis and a sacrifice fly by Dom Fazzary.
Senior Karter Rude led off the home half of the sixth with a single to right field, and ended up on third after the ball was misplayed. He scored moments later on an RBI single by junior Caleb Nichols.
After Nichols stole second base, Kraft stroked a two-out, 0-2 pitch to left field to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead.
Kraft pitched around a one-out double in the top of the seventh inning, ending the game with a pair of strikeouts.
Nichols singled twice, scored one run and drove in one run, while Rude singled, scored one run, and stole two bases, and Kraft singled and knocked in one run to account for the Wildcats’ four hits.
Lewis was tagged with the loss for the Seneca Indians, allowing two runs on four hits, while striking out five and walking one in six innings.
Athens, now 12-7, squares off with Sayre Sunday at PNC Field in Scranton.
WELLSBORO — Wellsboro plated six runs in the home half of the sixth
inning to blow open a close game en route to an 11-4 win over Athens
here Tuesday afternoon in NTL Large School baseball action.
The Wildcats took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning on an RBI single by senior Kaden Setzer, but the Hornets answered with a run in the bottom of the inning.
Athens re-gained the lead with two runs in the top of the third. Junior Carson Smith, senior Karter Rude, and junior Caleb Nichols stoked consecutive singles to make it 2-1, and Rude scored as Nichols was thrown out attempting to steal second.
Once again, however, Wellsboro answered, scoring two runs in the home half of the inning to tie the game at 3-3.
Wellsboro scored two more runs in the fourth inning to take a 5-3 lead, but Athens closed the gap to 5-4 in the fifth when Nichols scampered home on a passed ball. The Wildcats had runners on second and third with no outs, but couldn’t push another run across the plate.
The first sixth batters in the Hornets’ six reached base, with four crossing the plate to extend the lead to 9-4. They ended up scoring two more runs to make it 11-4.
Nichols stroked three singles, scored one run, and drove in one run, and junior Mason Lister singled twice to pace Athens’ eight-hit attack, while Rude and Smith singled and scored one run, Setzer singled and drove in one run, and junior Jaren Glisson scored one run.
Brody Morral stroked three singles, scored two runs, and drove in one run, and Caden Smith had three hits, including a double, scored one run, and knocked in one run in Wellsboro’s 12-hit attack.
Athens, now 10-7, returns to action Monday at North Penn-Mansfield.
ATHENS — Unbeaten Wyalusing scored an unearned run on two Athens errors
on the same play in the top of the third inning to take the lead for
good on its way to a 7-4 win over Athens here Monday afternoon in NTL
Large School Division baseball action.
With two outs in the top of the third inning, and the game tied 2-2, Trehnon Hugo hit a flyball that was misplayed. An errant relay throw to third bases allowed Hugo to score to give the Rams a 3-2 lead.
Wyalusing added another run in the fourth, and three more in the top of the seventh to take a 7-2 lead.
The Wildcats scored two runs in the home half of the seventh, on an RBI double by junior Mason Lister and a passed ball.
Lister doubled twice and drove in one run, and senior Karter Rude singled twice, stole two bases, and scored one run to pace Athens at the plate, while senior Kaden Setzer doubled and scored one run.
Senior Dylan Merritt doubled and drove in one run for the Wildcats, while junior Jaren Glisson doubled, junior Cam Sullivan singled, and junior Caleb Nichols scored one run.
Junior Lucas Kraft was tagged with the loss, allowing four runs — three earned — on seven hits, while striking out two and walking four in 4 2/3 innings. Sullivan allowed three runs — two earned — on three hits, while striking out two and walking none in 2 1/3 innings.
Hugo earned the win for the Rams, allowing two runs on seven hits, while striking out four and walking two in 5 2/3 innings. Blake Morningstar closed out the game, allowing two unearned runs on one hit, while striking out four and walking one.
The Wildcats took the early lead with one run in the bottom of the first inning.
Rude led off with a single, and stole second. Sullivan then stroked a single to right field, and Rude scored when the ball was misplayed.
Wyalusing answered with two runs in the top of the second on a sacrifice fly by Hugo and a bases-loaded walk to Morningstar.
Athens tied the game in the bottom of the second. Setzer led off with a double and ended up on third when the ball was misplayed in the outfield. He scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Merritt.
Robert English doubled and singled, scored two runs, and drove in one run, and Kenny Mapes singled twice, scored one run, and had two RBI to pace Wyalusing’s 10-hit attack, and Jacob Bryun belted a solo home run.
Athens, now 10-6, travel to Wellsboro Tuesday.
ATHENS — Senior Karter Rude helped Athens manufacture both of its runs,
and juniors Lucas Kraft and Cameron Sullivan combined on a strong
pitching performance to lead the Wildcats to a season-opening, 2-1, win
over Cowanesque Valley here Friday afternoon.
“We had a plan to use our speed and really run the bases,” said Athens coach Charlie Havens. “It did move the runners really well.
“We could’ve used a few more hits, but that aggression (on the base paths) did lead to the winning run.” he noted.
Havens was pleased with his pitchers’ performance, and his team’s defense in a game that was visited by rain showers throughout.
"Lucas Kraft had a strong start, and really got tough with runners on base,” he said.
“Cam Sullivan was solid in relief,” noted Havens. “He came in with runners on first and third, and got out of the jam.”
“On a wet field, to only have three errors and give up one run, isn’t a bad start to the season,” added Havens.
After Kraft retired CV in order in the top of the first inning, Rude was hit by a pitch to lead off the home half of the frame.
Rude took second on a passed ball, and move to third on a groundout off the bat of junior Caleb Nichols. With two outs, Rude scampered home on an infield RBI single by Mason Lister to make it 1-0.
The Indians tied the game in the top of the third.
Coen Kemp and Carter Ackley led off the inning with back-to-back singles. With one out, Ackley, who was on second base following a fielder’s choice, stole third and score when the throw sailed into left field.
Kraft avoided any further damage with a strikeout, and a groundout to end the threat.
Nichols drew a one-out walk in the home half of the inning, and stole second, but was thrown out attempting to score on a single by Lister.
In the bottom of the fifth, Rude laced a line-drive, one-out single to left field. After stealing second and third bases, he scooted home on an RBI grounder off the bat of Nichols to make it 2-1.
In the top of the sixth, Kraft hit Kade Sottolano with a pitch to start the inning, then gave up a one-out single to Tucker St. Peter that advanced Sottolano to third base.
Sullivan relieved, and Nichols promptly threw out St. Peter attempting to steal second. Sullivan then struck out the next batter to end the inning.
“We put a cut play on with the steal to hold the runner on third, and it worked to perfection with a great throw to second by Nichols,” said Havens.
Senior Jaren Glisson ripped a two-out single to left field int he home half of the inning, then stole second, but was stranded there.
Sullivan struck out the first two batters in the top of the seventh inning, but with two outs CV’s Jordan Vargeson worked a two-out walk. Nick West followed with a bloop single to short right field, but pinch-runner Isaiah Bogsch was tagged out after a run-down between second and third to end the game.
Glisson singled twice and stole two bases, and Lister singled twice and drove in a run to pace Athens’ six-hit attack, while Rude, scored two runs, and stole two bases, and junior Gage Warner added a single.
Kraft earned the win for the Wildcats, allowing one run on six hits in 5 1/3 innings. He fanned six and walked none.
Sullivan recorded the save, allowing one hit in 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. He struck out three and walked one.
Ackley singled twice, stole two bases, and scored one run to pace CV’s seven-hit attack, while Sottolano singled and swiped two bags, and St. Peter, McGwire Painter, Kemp and West each added a single.
Painter was tagged with the tough-luck loss, allowing two runs — one earned — on five hits in five innings. He struck out four and walked one.
St. Peter pitched a scoreless inning of relief, allowing one hit and recording one strikeout.
Athens returns to action Thursday when it hosts Canton, while CV hosts Towanda Tuesday.