PUNXSUTAWNEY â€” Sometimes, it's just not your night. Friday evening, that was the case for Fezell Enterprise's junior Legion team, which fell 17-0 in five innings at the hands of Young Township.
Young Township jumped on Fezell early by batting around and putting up a four-spot in the top of the first on four hits with the help of two errors by the home squad.
Tanner Yard got things started with a one-out walk, and after forcing Mike Percic into a grounder to short, Fezell saw the ball on the ground as the dust cleared and Percic had reached on an error, putting runners at first and second.
Brandon Neal singled to left, and Punxsy's second error â€” a miscue by left fielder Peyton Graham â€” allowed Yard to score the first run of the game.
Devin Fairman and Loren Wingard pushed Fox Township's lead to three with back-to-back RBI singles. Punxsy starter Trent Stouffer struck out Matt Tamski for the inning's second out, but a single by Brady Neal loaded the bases to set up an RBI walk by Dillon Wingard to set the score at 4-0.
Jake Townsend popped out to short to end the inning, but the damage had been done, and Fezell had dug itself a deep hole.
Loren Wingard was the Young Township starter, and he wasted no time retiring Fezell in the first, with his only flub being a hit batsman to Joey DiPietro.
He retired Dylan Huey on an F4 and made Graham dribble one in front of the plate for a putout.
Then, after DiPietro took one in the side and took his granted base, Lucas Ambler popped up to second baseman Yard for his second putout and the third out.
Young Township started at the top again in the second, and this time, leadof hitter Ryan Ferguson delivered with a single and stole second.
Yard reached on a second error by Huey at short, and with Ferguson advancing to third on the play, he quickly stole second to put two in scoring position for Percic.
And Percic came through in a big way, delivering a blistering shot off the center-field fence for a two-RBI double.
After the double pushed the lead to 6-0, Stouffer set down the rest of the side in order with a pair of fly outs and a 4-3.
Fezell picked up its first hit of the game on a one-out bloop single off Zach Bevak's bat. But he was soon retired trying to take second base on a delayed steal, and Yard earned another easy putout to put a period on the second inning.
Stouffer hung his only zero of the game in the third despite a leadoff single by Tamski and a walk to Brady Neal.
Stouffer got out of the mess with a lazy F-6, a 6-3 putout by Huey and a fly ball to right fielder Dylan Bender.
After Wingard quickly recorded a pair of outs in the home half, Fezell picked up a pair of walks â€” to Michael Greenblatt and Huey â€” but a great diving and crawling play on a foul ball by catcher Brady Neal retired Graham and the side.
Unfortunately for the home squad, Young Township really busted out the bats in the top of the fourth, bringing 17 hitters to the dish and scoring 11 runs on eight hits off reliever Tyler Geer.
The 11-run frame was highlighted by a pair of singles by Yard, a pinch-hit RBI single by Aaron Gray, a triple and single by Brandon Neal and a bases-clearing, three-RBI
three-bagger by Ferguson over the right fielder's head.
Looking weary from the long stay in the field, the host went three up, three down in the fourth, with Wingard earning a pair of strikeouts, and the game was off to the fifth frame.
Ambler, who had come on to close out the fourth, and did so with a strikeout, came out for the fifth as well, and he quickly struck out three more hitters in pinch hitter Tyler Hill, Gray and pinch hitter Doug Shaffer.
Geer picked up Punxsy's second hit of the evening with a one-out single in front of the left fielder, but a pair of fielder's choices off the bats of Caleb Smith and Canaan Knox ended the game.
Fezell will be back in action Monday when it hosts Marion Center at 6 p.m.
In other recent action:
â€¢ Derry 12, Fezell 2, 5 innings
Cam Gerhard led the way with a 3-for-3, two-RBI night at the plate to lead Derry past Fezell Tuesday in Indiana County Youth League action in Derry.
Alex Rebtoy and Ryan Maloy each picked up a pair of hits as well to lead the home team to the victory.
Zach Bevak, Keeston Perry, Peyton Graham and Canaan Knox each recorded hits for Punxsy, and Perry and Graham added RBIs.
Damian Huffman pitched four-plus to earn the win for Derry, allowing just one run on two hits, and Rebtoy closed out the game with one inning of work.
Bevak started for Fezell, allowing 10 runs on five hits over three full innings, and Lucas Ambler finished off the game, pitching 1.1 innings and allowing two runs on four hits.View more articles in: