CURWENSVILLE — The Golden Tide of Curwensville were still riding strong after their long, extra-inning victory last week against Brockway as they took to the field on Tuesday afternoon to host the Harmony Owls.
On this afternoon, the bats for the home squad lit up the field, and increased the scoreboard seemingly with every swing. Curwensville hammered 11 hits, while holding Harmony to only two, before ultimately ending the afternoon in a mercy-rule 11-1 triumph.
The Tide got things rocking early in the first inning as Noah VonGunden and Jake Mullins each reached base on a walk and a hit by pitch, respectively. A ground out by Avery Francisco started the scoring as VonGunden crosssed home. Starting pitcher Jake McCracken brought home the next run with an RBI-single to center field, bringing Mullins to the plate. McCracken and Ralph Evans both came home on the same at bat, as Matt Brown blasted a two-RBI double to right field, making the score 4-0 after just one inning.
McCracken was dealing all game long, as he went five innings, giving up one run, and striking out 11 in the process.
“Jake pitched a strong game today,” head coach Tom Harzinski said afterwards. “We played strong defense as well, as we only had one error all game. We played a real complete game tonight.”
The second inning was more of the same as VonGunden scored the fifth run with his RBI-single that plated Cole Bressler. VonGunden then scored his second run on the afternoon on a sacrifice fly by McCracken, and it was 6-0 heading into the third.
Harmony struggled mightily at the pitcher’s plate as Adam McGarvey gave up 10 of the 11 runs on the afternoon, going 4.2 innings while striking out five. Although his teammates did get one run back in the third on an RBI-single by Daniel Rorabaugh.
McGarvey was tabbed with the loss at game’s end, while McCracken got his first win of the year.
Curwensville got that lone Harmony run back in the bottom of the inning as Bressler brought Christian Bakaysa home on an RBI-double.
It was the fifth inning that ultimately decided the game in swift fashion. Brown grounded out to lead things off, but Keegan Wilson singled to get a runner on. Jeremy Irwin pinch-hit, and flew out to right field. At that point, the Tide went to the top of the lineup, and that changed the game entirely. VonGunden hammered a deep double to right field to put him and Farley on second and third. After a Mullins walk loaded the bases, a two-RBI single from Avery Francisco increased the advantage to 9-1.
McCracken then hit another double to plate Bloom. Harmony coaches then decided with runners on second and third, a pitching change was needed. McGarvey was removed, and Isaac Elias took over with two outs to work with.
The first batter he faced, Caleb Vance, got struck in the side, leading to loaded bases once again for the ultimate jam. Harzinski knew one run would end the game. Curwensvile got that run, in the easiest way, as Brock Heitsenreather saw a 3-1 pitch go high, and he walked to first, which ultimately led Francisco to home plate, and the game officials called the game over.
“It was a good game for us. Brockway played us hard last week, and Harmony did as well,” Harzinski said. “They are trying to build a program over there, and their coaches are good. So they are a good team. We just had a complete game tonight.”
Curwensville (2-3) does not have much time on their home field during the month of April one other time. Harzinski joked at that note, saying, “We’re going to be living on the road all month. But that’s alright, we play well on the road, and we’ll be ready for it.”
Those road games start on Thursday with a short trip up the road to the Clearfield High School for a 4:30 start against the Bison.
SCORE BY INNING
Harmony 001 00 – 1 2 1
Curwensville 421 04 – 11 11 1
Harmony – 1
Elias CF/P 3110, McGarvey P/SS 3000, Rorabaugh SS/CF 1011, Watson 1B 2000, Rainey 3B 2000, Bailey 2B 2000, Kruise C 1000, Elli LF 2000, Pettus RF 1000, Passmore RF 0000. TOTALS 17 1 2 1.
Curwensville – 11
VonGunden SS 3321, Mullins 2B 1100, Bloom PR 0100, Francisco CF 3113, McCracken P 4123, Evans 1B 3110, Vance PR 0000, Bakaysa LF 3110, Heitsenreather PH 0001, Brown EH/DH 2012, Farley 3B 1000, Wilson 3B 2110, Bressler RF 2121, Irwin RF 1000. TOTALS 25 11 11 11.
2B: Bakaysa, Bressler, Brown, McCracken, VonGunden. SAC: Mullins. HBP: Brown, Francisco, Mullins, Vance.
SB: Elias, Rorabaugh/Bressler, Evans, Francisco, McCracken, VonGunden-2. E: Rorabaugh/McCracken
LOB: Harmony – 4, Curwensville – 5
Harmony: McGarvey-4.2 IP, 10 H, 10 R, 9 ER, 5 SO, 2 BB; Elias-0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 SO, 1 BB.
Curwensville: McCracken-5 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 11 SO, 3 BB.
Golden Tide Scoreboard:
Date Opponent Score Record
3/22 Deer Lakes @ S. Carolina 5 – 9 0 – 1
3/23 Lakeview @ S. Carolina 4 – 9 0 – 2
3/26 DUBOIS CENTRAL CATH. 2 – 8 0 – 3
3/28 BROCKWAY 5-2, 10 inn. 1 – 3
4/02 HARMONY 11 – 1 2 – 3
4/04 @ Clearfield
4/08 ELK COUNTY CATHOLIC
4/10 @ Kane
4/12 @ Mo Valley
4/15 @ West Branch
4/16 @ Punxsutawney
4/18 @ Johnsonburg
4/22 @ Elk County Catholic
4/23 @ DuBois Central Catholic
4/25 @ Brockway
5/06 WEST BRANCH