A series of clutch defensive plays late in the game helped Back Mountain win the District 31 Junior Little League Baseball title with a 5-4 win over visiting Greater Wyoming Area July 14.
Sam Nocito, Lucas McGeehan and Kyle Sincavage all made timely defensive plays that helped Back Mountain pull out the victory on a three-run sixth inning.
Greater Wyoming Area scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth for a 4-2 lead.
Fred Lombardo, who earlier had a sacrifice fly, tripled to start the winning rally.
Jack Lukasavage drove in Lombardo with a bunt single, then scored on a long double by Frank Nockley, who came around with the winning run when the ball was misplayed.
Back Mountain had no such defensive difficulties.
Nocito and McGeehan made tough catches in the outfield in the sixth after Back Mountain had taken the lead.
Sincavage ranged up the middle to catch a liner to end the game with the tying run in scoring position.
Lombardo, Lukasvage, Nockley and Sincavage all had two hits in the win.
The win advanced Back Mountain to the Section 5 Tournament, a four-team, double-elimination event which was scheduled to open Wednesday night.
Section 5 9-10 baseball
Back Mountain American took advantage of the home field to win both rounds of winners’ bracket play in the Section 5 tournament.
Going into Thursday, BMA had two chances to get the one more win it needed to advance to state play at Bradford July 26-Aug. 1.
BMA shut out Green Ridge, 3-0, Monday then edged Abington American, 5-4, Tuesday.
Zach Paczewski threw five scoreless innings with five strikeouts against Green Ridge. Sam Barrouk pitched the sixth and struck out two.
Joey Peters had a double and two RBI in the win.
Jude Nocito doubled in the tying run and scored the winner against Abington American.
Nocito drove in Ryan Cuba then scored when Paczewski also doubled.
Barrouk pitched a scoreless inning for the save and also contributed two hits.
Nocito and Aiden Burkhardt also pitched in the game.
Section 5 9-10 softball
Back Mountain followed up an unbeaten run through the District 31 tournament by winning the first two games of the four-team, double-elimination Section 5 tournament at Old Forge to emerge as the last unbeaten.
The wins, 17-0 over Wallenpaupack in four innings Monday and 4-2 over Pittston Area Tuesday, put Back Mountain in position where it went into Thursday with two chances to get the last win it needed to claim the section title.
Back Mountain is 5-0 in the tournament season. Victoria Spaciano has been the winning pitcher in each game, striking out 60 and giving up just three runs on four hits over 24 innings in five games.
Every Back Mountain starter scored in a 12-run first inning and Spaciano threw her second four-inning, no-hitter of the postseason against Wallenpaupack. She got all 12 outs on strikeouts and allowed just one walk.
Brenna Hunt led the offense, going 3-for-4 with two triples.
Spaciano, who homered, and Ava Hudak were each 2-for-4.
Sydney Bolesta, Allison Vitanovec and Madison Kerdesky also had hits.
Back Mountain needed to come from behind after Pittston Area scored runs in the second and third inning for a 2-0 lead.
Spaciano struck out 12 in a two-hitter and drove in three runs in the win. Her two-run triple in the fourth put Back Mountain in front and she singled in another run in the sixth.
Vitanovec drove in the other run in the three-run fourth.
Hunt had a single.
Pittston Area’s Gianna Adams struck out 14 in the loss.
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