By Mike White | Thursday, June 10, 2010, 11 p.m.
For the second time in nine days, Pine-Richland knocked off North Allegheny in a big game.
Pine-Richland came back from an early four-run deficit and defeated North Allegheny, 9-5, tonight in a PIAA Class AAAA quarterfinal at the Burkett Complex in Robinson Township. Last week, Pine-Richland defeated North Allegheny in the WPIAL final.
North Allegheny led, 5-1, after two innings, but Pine-Richland tied it in the top of the third and went ahead in the fifth. Pine-Richland had eight runs on 10 hits in the final five innings. North Allegheny starter Tanner Wilt, a hard-throwing right-hander who already has committed to Coastal Carolina as a junior, pitched 6 2/3 innings and gave up nine hits, including two home runs. He struck out seven.
"[Wilt] is a very good pitcher," said Pine-Richland coach Kurt Wolfe, whose team is averaging almost nine runs during an 11-game winning streak. "But that northern section we play in, we’re so used to seeing so many good pitchers. … We average 20 baserunners a game, so we felt confident that we would eventually battle back."
Left fielder Ron Peirish was one of the hitting stars with a solo home run and a two-run triple. Sophomore catcher Russell Clark also hit a solo home run while Matt Berezo had a two-run triple. To me, Berezo is the best overall player in the entire WPIAL. He was also good defensively again.
For North Allegheny, right fielder Mike Cammarata had four RBIs on a pair of two-run singles.
WPIAL champ Hopewell loses
In Class AAA quarterfinal action, Hopewell lost to Hershey, 15-7, at Veteran’s Field in Altoona, and Moon was shut out by WPIAL third-place finisher Elizabeth Forward, 2-0, at the Burkett Complex in Robinson.
A red-hot Hershey (19-8) offense slammed Hopewell (23-2). The Trojans scored seven runs in the second inning and went ahead, 10-2, in the third. The biggest problem for Hopewell was that Scott Dierdorf didn't pitch. He had won all four postseason games for Hopewell, but had pitched Monday, which made him ineligible for today. Hopewell obviously is a much different team when he's not on the mound. Hopewell used five pitchers.
Hopewell cut the lead to 10-6 with two runs in the sixth, and later in the inning loaded the bases with no outs. But the Vikings’ rally was halted after a double play and flyout. Trailing, 10-7, the Vikings were tagged for five runs in the bottom of the inning.
Dierdorf drove in four runs for Hopewell.
In the Moon-Elizabeth Forward game, Tony Totedo was the story for Elizabeth Forward (21-5), as the junior pitcher scattered six hits and kept Moon (18-6) off balance most of the game.
"We’ll hit fastballs, but we have trouble sometimes with someone throwing breaking balls," Moon coach Dom Santeufemio said "He must have thrown 100 breaking balls."
Moon pitcher Brad Schnelle had a perfect game through four innings, but gave up two runs in the fifth, one on an error, the other on a sacrifice fly by Greg Sotereanos.
Moon loaded the bases with one out in the seventh, but the Tigers finished with a fly out and ground out.
In Class A, Mount Union edged Burrell, 5-4, In nine innings,
Sophomore left-hander Alain Girman pitched a three-hitter and struck out 10 as Serra defeated Mercyhurst Prep, 2-1, to reach the semifinals for the second year in a row. Girman had tossed no-hitters in his previous two starts. Having tied the score in the fourth, Serra scored the winning run in the sixth. With runners on first and third with one out, the Eagles tried a double steal. During a rundown, an errant throw allowed Chris Miller to score.