Baseball team rides strong start from Groshong, downs Pequea Valley 10-2
Another game is in the books for the L-S baseball team, and as it has been all week, it was a sunny day with a slight wind. The Pioneers took on the Pequea Valley Braves.
|Garrett Groshong got the job done on the hill for the Pioneers, allowing just two runs in six innings|
Garrett Groshong was a commanding presence on the mound for the Pioneers and pitched to contact while pounding the strike zone with great control for six innings. In the first, he retired the Braves three up, three down.
Neither team had notched a score until Andrew Hay stepped into the batter’s box in the second inning. When the pitch came, he nailed a line drive to right field that kept blowing and blowing until it flew out of the park. Hay did not even know what happened; he looked quite surprised -- just like everyone else -- as he rounded the bases. This was just the beginning for the Pioneers.
L-S continued to play hard in the field and did not allow any runs from Pequea Valley for five innings, but continued to pad their lead at the plate. In the third inning, Dan Eshleman and Devon Weiant were both able to get on base with clean base hits (Eshleman's of the infield variety). Thereafter, Colin Eckman to the plate. When Eckman made solid contact to right field, the wind did its magic again as the ball traveled over the fence for a three run home run.
|Andrew Hay looked as surprised as anyone while he rounded|
the bases on his solo home run in the second inning
During the fourth inning, the Pioneers had capitalized on some fielding errors by Pequea Valley. Connor Brown reached on a fielding error by the third baseman and then stole second base with his quick speed. Bear Shank then launched a fly ball to centerfield that the outfielder could not corral and Brown reached home. Then Dan Eshleman was up to bat and hit a double to bring home Shank. At the end of the inning it was 6-0 Pioneers.
Meanwhile, Groshong continued to pitch to contact and rely on his defense to record outs, a strategy that largely proved effective, three fielding errors by second basemen notwithstanding; regular starter Caleb Danehower missed the game due to an injury sustained last week.
In the sixth inning Pequea Valley scored two runs after a sequence in which the Pioneers committed two errors due to some scrappy baserunning by the Braves. To avert additional damage, a heads-up throw by Chase Nelle home to catcher Devon Weiant was able to get the runner out at home for the third out of the inning.
The Pioneers responded at the plate. Garrett Groshong and Ben Rhoades got on base and when Bear Shank was up, he drove in Groshong. Eshleman was able to get a hit and Pequea Valley’s shortstop had an error, allowing Rhoades to cross the plate. Weiant doubled, and then when Eckman was up, he hit a single and Eshleman and Weiant to score. At the end of the sixth inning, the score was 10-2 Pioneers.
Ioanni Kovack came in as relief pitcher for Groshong and threw a clean top of the seventh, so the Pioneers beat the Braves 10-2, advancing to 2-0 on the season.
--Ashley Zehr, LSNews.org Sports Reporter; Photos by Lauren Mast, LSNews.org Director of Sports Photography