Greater Pittston used some solid pitching over the final five games of the season to earn the No. 1 seed in this weekend’s Wyoming Valley American Legion playoffs.
The defending WVAL champions allowed just five runs in wins over Old Forge, Mountain Post and Tunkhannock - including shutout victories over Tunkhannock and Old Forge - as they moved past Back Mountain to finish in first place after posting 17 wins in the regular season.
GP faced fourth-seeded Plains (14-6) in yesterday’s playoff opener. Greater Pittston beat its closest Legion rival twice during the regular season. Third-seeded Nanticoke (14-6) took on second-seeded Back Mt. (16-4) at 4 p.m. Both games were played at Mountain Post.
The winners and losers of Saturday’s semifinals will play today at Mountain Post with the winners playing at 1 p.m. and the losers at 4 p.m. The full playoff schedule is listed below.
Erik Walkowiak pitched a complete-game, no-hitter to lead Greater Pittston to a 6-0 win over Tunkhannock in the first game of a doubleheader last Saturday at the Atlas Sports Complex in West Pittston.
Walkowiak struck out 11 and walked just one in picking up his first win of the season.
Trent Grove doubled twice among his three hits for Greater Pittston, and Ryan Carey and Sam Eramo each added two hits for the defending WVAL champs. One of Eramo’s hits went for a triple.
Chris Murphy added a two-run single for GP, and PJ Bone and Cody Poder also drove in runs.
Greater Pittston also won the second game of the doubleheader, 12-1.
Three pitchers combined on a four-hitter as Greater Pittston beat Mountain Post, 8-2, in a Wyoming Valley American Legion League game on Tuesday afternoon in Mountain Top.
Andre Harris, winning-pitcher Anthony Bellino, and Kody Nowicki also combined to strike out nine while walking four in allowing just four singles.
Sam Eramo and Chris Murphy each smacked three singles, and Bellino added a three-run double for the GP offense. Matt Carroll added two hits for Greater Pittston.
Greater Pittston took a doubleheader from Old Forge Post 513 on Wednesday afternoon at the Atlas Sports Complex in West Pittston.
In Game 1, Ryan Carey and Cody Poder each smacked three hits and scored two runs to lead GP to a 14-2 win over Old Forge.
Chris Murphy added a single, double and three RBI, and Kody Nowicki and Matt Carroll each added two hits to back the five-hit pitching of winner Sam Eramo.
Eramo also walked four in five innings while strikeout our three and allowing just two earned runs.
Derek Drasba led Old Forge with an RBI single, and Connor Fultz also drove in a run. Billy Preston, Tyler Loftus, Dom Avvisato and Brandon Pernot all added singles for Post 513.
In Game 2, Anthony Bellino scattered four hits and two walks over six innings in a complete-game shutout victory over Post 513, 10-0.
Dave Drahus collected three hits and three RBI for Greater Pittston, and PJ Bone and Travis DeBona split four hits and four RBI. Randy McDermott added two hits for GP, and Kyle Colarusso chipped in with an RBI single.
Mike Swantek, Derek Drasba, Connor Fultz and AJ Phillips each singled for Old Forge.
Old Forge rallied for four runs in the top of the seventh to take a lead on Nanticoke, but the hosts from the south rallied with three of their own in the bottom of the inning to steal an 8-7 win in a WVAL game on Tuesday afternoon.
Alec Parchinski and Ian Nemetz each singled home two runs in the four-run seventh for Post 513, and Connor Fultz and Mike Swantek split four hits and two RBI in the loss.
Ryan Fletcher struck out eight in 6.1 innings of work in a no-decision for Old Forge.
Plains v. Greater Pittston, 1
Nanticoke v. Back Mt., 4
G1 winner v. G2 winner, 1
G1 loser v. G2 loser, 4
G4 winner v. G3 loser, 5:30
G5 winner v. G3 winner,
If necessary if G5 winner
wins G7, 5:30