Baseball: Pioneers Knock Off Previously Undefeated Barons
After a win against Section 2 foe Conestoga Valley on Wednesday night, the Pioneers were back in action Saturday morning against the Manheim Central Barons. The Barons were 12-0 entering the matchup, sitting on top of both the Section 3 standings and the District III 5A power rankings.
Jack Swarr in Game vs Cedar Crest (Cynthia Powell)
Jack Swarr started on the bump for the Pioneers. In his previous start against J.P. McCaskey, Swarr pitched 6.2 no-hit innings before having to exit the game due to pitch count rules. Connor Rohrer was the starting pitcher for the Barons. Rohrer entered the game with a 0.64 ERA, having allowed only two runs on the season.
The Pioneers kicked off the action early, as Xander Getchis laced a double over left fielder Colton Book's head to knock in Isaiah Parido. Parido had doubled himself on the previous pitch to put himself in scoring position. In the third inning, a groundout by Braedon Karpathios drove in a run to put the Pioneers up 2-0. Also in the inning, Andrew Whitehead knocked in a run on a ball hit to left field to extend the L-S lead to 3.
Andrew Whitehead in Game vs Penn Manor (Cynthia Powell)
Just when it looked like the Pioneers might coast to a shutout victory, the Barons notched 2 runs on the scoreboard in the top of the 5th inning. A single by Riley McGallicher and a double by Mason Zilinski gave the Barons baserunners and a huge momentum shift. Mason Weaver knocked in the first run on a sacrifice fly, followed by a clutch line-drive single by Andrew Mylin to plate the second.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Pioneers were seeking an insurance run to extend their one-run lead. Isaiah Parido and Xander Getchis walked to start the inning, followed by two quick outs by relief pitcher Trey Derck. Due up next at the plate was Gehrig Harsh, who entered the game in relief to Jack Swarr. Harsh delivered, poking a single over the third baseman's head to score Parido and give the Pioneers a critical security run. The single was Harsh's first hit of the season, having only 2 at-bats during the rest of the season. Harsh slammed the door shut in the 7th inning to earn a 2-inning save and hand the Barons their first loss of the campaign.
Gehrig Harsh Prior to Game vs Penn Manor (Cynthia Powell)
Next up for the Barons is a trip to Myerstown to take on the Raiders on Monday afternoon. The Pioneers have a full Section 2 slate in the upcoming week, traveling to a streaking Elizabethtown team on Monday, then hosting Solanco and Ephrata later in the week.
--By Logan Moyer, LS News reporter