CENTRAL LEAGUE BASEBALL: Jefferson enjoys very successful four-day run on diamond
It was a very productive four days for the Jefferson Titans.
The Titans won three games during the span, including a Central League playoff victory on Sunday. Jefferson also clinched the regular-season title with a victory on Saturday.
It all started Thursday, when the Titans ended a three-game losing streak with a 6-2 win at Vikings to remain in first place.
On Saturday, Jefferson clinched the outright league regular-season title with a 5-3 comeback win over Pleasureville. The Titans finished the regular season at 17-6-1, good for 52 points. That was one-point better than second-place Glen Rock (17-7).
Then on Sunday, Jefferson started its best-of-three semifinal playoff series with an 4-2 triumph over visiting Mechanicsburg. That puts Jefferson just one win away from moving to the league playoff title series. Game 2 in the semifinal series is 5:45 p.m. Tuesday at Mechanicsburg.
In Sunday's playoff victory, Kyle Kingsbury pitched a complete-game five-hitter, striking out eight and walking two. He did not allow an earned run. Jefferson's offense was led by Ross Drawbaugh (three hits, double), Scott Trail (two hits, double, RBI, run), Brodey Neveker (two hits, two RBIs), Jordan Witmer (two hits, walk) and Colin Porter (double, run). Ben Eppley pitched a complete game for Mechanicsburg, allowing two earned runs. Benny Montgomery doubled with an RBI for the Cardinals.
In Saturday's win, Jefferson trailed Pleasureville 2-1 going into the sixth inning before using a four-run rally to take the lead for good. The Titans got some help from the Hawks in the sixth, with one run scoring on an error and another run scoring on a passed ball. Witmer added an RBI double, while Dylan Shaffer added an RBI groundout. Sam Crater added two hits, including a double, with two runs scored for Jefferson.
Brian Bossom got the win on the mound, going 5 2/3 innings and allowing two earned runs and 10 hits. He struck out five and walked three. Crater got the save, pitching 1 1/3 innings without allowing an earned run.
Tyler Wagner led the way for Pleasureville with four hits, including a double, with two runs scored and an RBI.
In Thursday's win vs. Vikings, Crater threw a complete game, striking out nine, walking none and allowing no earned runs. At the plate, Crater went 3 for 4 with one run scored.
Glen Rock wins opener over Stoverstown: In the other best-of-three Central League semifinal series, No. 2 seed Glen Rock downed No. 3 seed Stoverstown, 8-4.
Steve Cooke pitched a complete game for Glen Rock, allowing two earned runs and seven hits. He walked seven and struck out three.
The Glen Rock offense was led by Scott Merkel (two hits, two RBIs, walk, run), Troy Miller (homer, two RBIs), Brendan Martin (two hits, RBI, run), Justin Anderson (double, two walks, RBI, run) and Jonathan Lugo (two hits).
Stoverstown was paced by Drew Hildebrand (two hits), Levi Krause (three walks, run), Joe Yourgal (double, RBI, walk) and Kyle Raubenstine (1 2/3 innings of hitless, shutout relief).
Game 2 in the series is set for 5:45 p.m. Tuesday at Stoverstown.
Reach Steve Heiser at email@example.com.