Valley Sports Report
TREMONT, Pa. — Connor Davidson stroked a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the seventh inning to cap Athens’ two-day, 15-14, come-from-behind win over Cressona Area here Thursday night to advance to the championship game of the Section III Little League baseball playoffs.
The game started Wednesday evening and Cressona led 10-7 in the home half of the fourth inning, but Athens had the bases loaded when the thunderstorms rolled in, and the game was suspended.
When play resumed Thursday, Graham Wanck worked a walk to force home a run, capping a five-run rally and trimming the deficit to 10-8.
Cressona answered with four more runs to take a 14-8 lead, but Athens would chip away at the lead.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Sam Cheresnowsky ignited a three-run rally with a one-out double, and Davidson walked to put runners on first and second.
Eli Hicks started the scoring with an RBI single, and a wild throw allowed runners to move up to second and third. After an error plated one run, Cartyr Cockcroft drove in a run with an RBI single to cut the lead to 14-11.
After reliever Kamdyn Wheeler retired Cressona in order in the top of the sixth inning, he worked a one-out walk to start Athens rally.
With two outs, Davidson walked and Hicks ripped a single to center field to load the bases. Thetga walked to force home a run, and Alex McQuay laced a two-run single to right field to tie the game at 14-14.
Wheeler retired the first two Cressona batters in the top of the seventh, then walked the next two. Hicks came on in relief and pitched out of the jam.
In the bottom of the inning, Wanck walked, and moved to third base on consecutive passed balls. With one out, Wheeler was hit by a pitch, and Cheresnowsky beat out an infield single on a ball chopped in the dirt in front of home plate.
Davidson then delivered an 0-1 pitch into centerfield for the game-winning hit.
Athens took a 1-0 lead in the home half of the first inning on an RBI single by Hicks, and had the bases loaded with one out, but couldn’t muster any more runs.
Cressona appeared to take control of the game in the top of the third inning with 10 runs on seven hits, and four walks, but Athens began chipping away at the lead immediately.
A pair of one-out errors by Cressona in the bottom of the third set the stage for an RBI single by Duncan Thetga, and a wild pitch that plated Hicks to cut the lead to 10-3.
In the bottom of the fourth, with the skies threatening, Wanck, Zach Fisher, and Wheeler worked walks to load the bases. Cheresnowsky was hit by a pitch to force home a run, and Davidson stroked a line-drive RBI single to left field to close the gap to 10-5.
A sacrifice fly by Hicks made it 10-6, and an error scored Cheresnowsky timed the deficit to 10-7.
After a walk to Peter Bertsch loaded the bases, Cressona recorded a strikeout, and storms force stoppage of the game, and eventually for it to be suspended.
Hicks stroked three singles, scored three runs, and had three RBI, and Davidson had two hits, four runs scored, and two RBI to pace Athens’ 10-hit attack, while Cheresnowsky doubled and singled, scored two runs, and drove in one run, and Thetga singled and had three RBI.
McQuay singled and drove in two runs in the win, while Cockcroft singled and drove in one run, Wheeler scored three runs, Wanck scored two runs, and drove in one run, and Fisher crossed the plate once.
Athens will now play for a trip to States Saturday in the double-elimination tournament.
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