WRIGHTSVILLE — Susquehannock combined small ball with a huge, complete-game pitching performance from Conor Miller on Wednesday afternoon to improve its perfect record in York-Adams Division III.
The Warriors are now 7-0 in league play and 10-1 overall following a 5-1 victory over Eastern. The Golden Knights slipped to 3-2 and 3-7, respectively.
Ssuquehannock's players laid down four bunts, including a successful suicide one, and looked to take an extra base at every opportunity.
"Every day at practice, we start off with bunting, and we practice base running," Susquehannock head coach Tim Hare said. "We like to be aggressive, that's part of our arsenal. I thought we executed very well today."
After being blanked for three innings by Eastern pitching standout Brandon Knarr, the Warriors broke through for the tying run in the fourth. Josh Smiley stroked a one-out, opposite-field single to left field and took second on an error. Designated hitter Sam Odegaard bunted for a base hit, sending Smiley to third, and the two then executed a double steal for Susquehannock's first run, tying the game at 1-1.
The Warriors broke the deadlock in their next at bat.
Chase Summers, Hunter Sentz and Payton Reider each reached, Sentz on a single, to load the bases. Summers scored on a wild pitch with the other runners moving up a base. Following a strikeout, Sentz took off from third as Ben Trego laid down a bunt. When the play was made at first base, Sentz scored. Reider, meanwhile, who was also running from second on the pitch, didn't stop at third base and beat the throw home for the third run of the inning.
The Warriors tacked on another run in the sixth, but Miller didn't need any extra insurance.
The senior right-hander, after giving up a run in the first inning, pitched shutout ball the rest of the way. He struck out eight and walked just one
Miller got the job done, primarily with his fastball.
."I only threw my slider seven times, but the seven times, it worked in my favor," he said. "I knew they were going to come out swinging, but the seven guys behind me got it done."
The Warriors played errorless ball.
Hare said that efficiency is Miller's M.O.
"He's not the dominant type of pitcher that (Eastern's) Brandon Knarr is. Kudos to him (Knarr). That kid is worth every ounce of ink that's been spent on him. He's the real deal. Conor hits to his spots, he changes speeds, changes locations," Hare said.
The only run that Miller yielded came when Eastern's No. 2 hitter, Bren Taylor, drilled an inside-the-park home run in the first inning. Taylor ripped a drive down the right-field line, and circled the bases, diving across the plate as the relay throw came into the catcher.
The Golden Knights managed just three hits, two by Luke Shoff, the rest of the way.
"We are still playing with a young team," Golden Knights' head coach Blaine Garner said. "We had three or four freshmen out there. Brandon (Knarr) pitched a hell of a game for us, 13 strikeouts. But we're not seeing the ball the way we would like and driving it."
Knarr, who took his first loss of the season, threw 97 pitches in five innings. The hard-throwing left-hander entered the game not having allowed an earned run this season, and he kept that streak intact.
Dallastown 1, Central York 0: At Dallastown, Jake Gates pitched a one-hit shutout in a battle of York-Adams Division I contenders. He struck out three and walked two. Central's Mike Nizinski also pitched a one-hitter and didn't allow any earned runs. He struck out two and walked two. Dallastown's Alex Weakland singled and walked and scored the game's only run. Colin Parks doubled for Central's only hit. Dallastown improved to 6-4 overall and 5-2 in the division. Central fell to 6-4 and 5-3.
New Oxford 3, Red Lion 2: At Red Lion, the Colonials surprised first-place Red Lion in a York-Adams Division I battle. The Lions stayed in first, but dropped to 8-2 overall and 6-2 in the division. New Oxford improved to 5-5 and 2-5. Red Lion led 2-0 going into the fifth, but couldn't hold on. A.J. Cieslinski got the win, going 5 1/3 innings and allowing both Red Lion runs. Kobe Brown got the save with 1 2/3 innings of shutout relief. Zach Rudisill, Wade Linebaugh, Tanner Myers and Peyton Megonnell each had two New Oxford hits. Connor Dewees tripled and Tyler Stabley doubled for the Lions, who had just five hits.
Spring Grove 2, South Western 0: At Spring Grove, Cameron Sterner pitched a four-hit shutout, striking out two and walking one. He also had two hits and scored a run. Brandyn Schuchart and Austin Piety also had two hits each for the Rockets. Schuchart and Trent Baker drove in the game's only runs.
Gettysburg 3, Dover 2 (11 innings): At Gettysburg, the Warriors earned a walk-off victory thanks to Ethan Ketterman’s sacrifice fly in the 11th inning. Ketterman had two RBIs for Gettysburg. Wil Fetrow and Jeremy Bentzel each had an RBI for Dover, with Fetrow going 4 for 5.
West York 16, York Suburban 3 (6 innings): At York Suburban, the Bulldogs ended this one early, scoring 12 times over the final three innings against the Trojans. Along with pitching six strong innings and earning the win, Zach Gettys went 4 for 5 with three runs and six RBIs to lead West York, including roping a triple and home run. Colton Kubicki also had a triple and drove in five runs for the Trojans. Carson Holsinger and Collin Slenker each drove in runs for Suburban.
Hanover 3, York Tech 2 (10 innings): At Spry, the Nighthawks scored in the top of the 10th to grab the win. Tyler Smith had two hits and scored both runs for Tech. Luke Greisler pitched seven innings and allowed just two hits and zero earned runs, but still got a no-decision for the Spartans. Nathan Chronister took the loss despite pitching three innings and not allowing an earned run.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.