ROAD VICTORY: Hanna goes 3-for-3, Wildcats get 11-6 win on the road over Braves
SUNBURY– Central Mountain High School exited Sunbury with the win, but head coach Michael Kramer left the game with a sour emotion.
He watched his team explode for eight runs in the first inning only to quickly fade. They were outscored 6-3 in the final six innings of the game, but managed to outlast Shikellamy, 11-6, to improve its record to 8-2 on the year.
“You can’t get much of a better start than we had,” Central Mountain coach Michael Kramer said. “But I was disappointed in the way we weren’t able to add to it as we went on. We scored eight runs in the first inning, only to get 11 total [runs] in the whole game.”
The bulk of Central Mountain’s first-inning success occurred with two outs. Ahead by a score, Aaron Swartz recorded an RBI single to put CM ahead, 2-0. The score was the beginning of four consecutive RBI hits by the Wildcats.
Trevor Hanna followed Swartz with another RBI single to put CM ahead 3-0.Troy Gardner added a 2-run single to stretch the Wildcats’ lead, 5-0.
Back-to-back RBI singles by Rocco Stark and leadoff batter Zach Eck extended CM’s lead 7-0 over Shikellamy. Eck completed the onslaught when he scored on a wild pitch to give CM an 8-0 lead heading into the bottom of the inning.
Central Mountain added another two runs in the second inning to go ahead 10-0. It provided some breathing room for Asher Corl who made his first varsity appearance on the mound.
“It’s nice to be a pitcher and have that type of run support right in the beginning of the game,” Kramer said. “We’re in a four-game stretch here in five days, so we needed to save pitching.”
“So Asher Corl stepped up and did a huge job for us today,” Kramer added. “We weren’t sure exactly how it was going to pan out, but he did well.”
Corl gave up two unearned runs in the second, which cut CM’s lead 10-2, as Central Mountain’s hitting and defense began to stall out. They fell flat after after a hot start– and the early 10-0 run may have ballooned their heads.
“Maybe we got up too early, too quick, and maybe we kind of felt like the game was over,” Kramer said. “But games are played seven innings, not just one inning. Maybe we lost some of our focus, whether it be at the plate, or on the field, and gave Shikellamy hope.”
After Trevor Hanna’s RBI single in the sixth put CM ahead 11-2, the Wildcats surrendered another three in the inning, cutting its lead 11-5. Shikellamy’s Jared Palmer recorded an RBI single in the sixth before Central Mountain closed the game with an 11-6 win.
Looking ahead, Central Mountain has a tough slate of games. They host Selinsgrove today at 4:30, before a district title game rematch against Hollidaysburg Saturday on the road.
They have a quick turnaround with another quality matchup against Jersey Shore on Monday.
“We got three tough games in front of us, but we can only play one at a time,” Kramer said. “So we’ve got to be ready to play seven innings of baseball [today].”
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R
CM 8 2 0 0 1 0 0 11
SH 0 2 0 0 3 1 0 6
WP: Asher Corl
LP: Nate Dealy
Central Mountain: Trevor Hanna (3-3, 3 RBIs), Evan Prough (3-4), Aaron Swartz (3-5, 1 RBI)
Shikellamy: Aiden Cooper (1-3, 1 RBI)