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Rossiter makes step toward playoffs, wins with lucky seven over Grays

July 9, 2011

Christian Muth runs to first base during the first inning of Rossiter's 7-0 victory over Brookville in Federation League play. Muth also pitched a complete-game shutout. (Lizi Arbogast/The Punxsutawney Spirit)

ROSSITER — The Rossiter Miners improved their record to 10-8 with a 7-0 victory against the Brookville Grays Friday night in Federation League action.

The Miners are now in a heated competition with the Grays for the second seed in the Fed League playoffs, which will begin Wednesday.

"We're excited with either second or third," Rossiter manager Rick Matthews said about his team's playoff seeding. "We're just excited to be up there."

Rossiter's offense was led by Jordan Mesoraco, who was 3-for-3 with two doubles and two RBIs.

He also scored one run.

First baseman Matt Gourley also had a good offensive game, going 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs.

Rossiter's pitcher Christian Muth had a stellar game from the mound, throwing a complete game shutout.

Muth gave up only two hits and walked just one batter. He struck out four.

Muth also had impressive offensive stats, as he went 2-for-3 and scored once.

Rossiter totaled 15 hits, with five batters notching at least two hits.

"Our bats are starting to come alive," Matthews said. "We've been struggling, but our bats are starting to come out. Now is the time to do it, right before the playoffs."

The Miners got the hitting going from the first batter, as Muth led off the first inning with a single to right field.

Pete Meterko then scored Muth, as he hit a rocket to right that was just short of a home run.

The Miners added to that lead during the bottom of the third when Gourley hit a double to center field, scoring Meterko.

Gourley then crossed home plate after another double to center field — this one hit by Mesoraco.

Mesoraco then attempted to steal third, but an error by Brookville's third baseman Anthony Black allowed Mesoraco to run all the way home.

The score was 4-0 by the end of the third.

In the bottom of the fourth, Brookville's starting pitcher Jed Fiscus was relieved by Ryan Barrett.

Fiscus gave up four runs on seven hits and two walks. He struck out only two batters.

Barrett likewise struggled, giving up the remaining three runs on eight hits and a walk. He hit one batter and struck out three.

Rossiter's final three runs all came in the fourth stanza, as Gourley's single to deep center field scored Kyle Neal and Jacob Stumpf.

Meterko was also able to cross home plate as Mesoraco hit his second double of the evening.

The Miners got more batters into scoring position during the sixth inning but were unable to build upon its seven-run lead.

Muth only allowed one hit during the seventh and final inning, but Rossiter's defense helped him, securing the shutout victory.

The Miners' defense and pitching were just as important to Friday night's win as Muth only faced 24 batters throughout the entire seven innings.

Matthews was confident after the game about Rossiter's abilities to go far in the playoffs.

"We're just going to try to keep hitting the ball and make sure our pitching is good," he said. "We'll come through. We have deep pitching, so hopefully all the guys will show up and play well."

Rossiter has two games remaining on its schedule — one against Skyesville at 5:30 Sunday and a make-up game against DuBois on Monday.

If Brookville wins its final game Sunday against NAPA, Rossiter will need to win both of its games this weekend to secure the second seed.

If the Grays lose their last game of the season, Rossiter will need only one victory to secure the second spot for the playoffs.

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