High school games don't always produce outstanding baseball.
Case in point: The District 6 Class A championship game Wednesday night at Blair County Ballpark.
Bishop Carroll, the seventh seed, knocked off Bishop McCort, the top seed, 14-7, in a game that also featured 23 hits and 10 errors.
Mirror photo by Gary M.?Baranec
Carroll’s Nick Lassak (12) is greeted by Ryan Woo after scoring on a wild pitch.
"It was a wild one," Carroll coach Matt Pfeil said. "You don't expect 10 errors between the both of us, but it's baseball and those things happen.
"I learned a lot from our kids tonight," he said. "They battled back and they deserve [the championship] ."
"That's baseball," McCort coach Chris Pfeil said. "In high school baseball, you never know what you're going to see.
"[Carroll] has a great program. They deserve the championship."
McCort, which beat Carroll twice in the regular-season, led 3-2 after five innings. Carroll scored four times in the top of the sixth to take a 6-3 lead only to see McCort answer with four of its own in the bottom of the inning to reclaim the advantage, 7-6.
However, the wheels came off for the Crushers in the top of the seventh. The Huskies tallied eight times - all with two outs - parlaying three hits, five walks and two hit batsmen off three McCort pitchers. The Crushers added to their own demise by committing three errors in the inning.
In spite of the errors, walks and hit batsmen, Luke Tatarko's successful squeeze bunt was the key play in Carroll's eight-run, game-winning inning.
The ninth batter in the lineup, Tatarko got Brett Sammarco home with a perfect bunt that gave the Huskies an 8-7 lead and they went on to blow it open.
"Luke Tatarko laid down a sweet squeeze bunt," Matt Pfeil said. "He's come up big the last two playoff games. The bunt was perfect. You couldn't ask for anything more.
"It was a team effort. Everyone picked each other up."
Carroll teams are used to doing that. Wednesday's baseball championship was the third District 6 title for the school this year. The Huskies also won D6 honors in football and basketball for the Triple Crown.
"We weren't top-seeded in any of them," Matt Pfeil said. "It's a true testament to the people at the school - staff, teachers, everybody. They teach dedication, pride and tradition."
There were several two-sport athletes but only outfielder-pitcher Ryan Woo played all three.
"It feels good to win districts in all three," Woo said. "It shows how hard our school works. It wasn't me as an individual. If it wasn't for my teammates, I wouldn't have done it.
"It was all team."
Game notes: Both teams advance to the PIAA state tourney Monday. Carroll faces the WPIAL runner-up while McCort gets the WPIAL champion in first-round games. ... The coaches - Carroll's Matt Pfeil and McCort's Chris Pfeil - are cousins. ... Taylor Makin and Drew McCabe each had three hits for the Huskies.
BISHOP CARROLL (14): Link 2b 531, Lassak p-lf 332, McCabe ss 413, Makin c 513, King 3b 311, Woo lf-p 210, Sammarco cf 310, Maruca dh 401, Strong 1b 000, Barzda pr 010, Tatarko rf 522. Totals - 34-14-13.
BISHOP McCORT (7): Kastelic 2b 422, Cooper p-ss 421, McMillen ss-3b 401, Vardian p 000, Trexler lf 000, Stenger c 312, Williams 1b 201, Antolik 3b-p-3b 301, N. Neiderhiser rf 410, Hrbal lf-p 210, Tomkowski p 000, Varga ph 101, Leech 301. Totals -30-7-10.
SCORE BY INNINGS
Bishop Carroll200 004 8-14 13 6
Bishop McCort010 024 0-7 10 4
E-Link, Lassak 2, Strong, King, Woo, McMillen, Kastelic, Williams, Cooper. 2B-McMillen. 3B-Stenger. RBI-Kastelic, Cooper, McMillen, Stenger, Link 2, Lassak, McCabe, Makin 2, Woo, Sammarco, Maruca, Tatarko. WP-Woo. LP-Vardian.
Records: Bishop Carroll (14-8); Bishop McCort (19-3).