DuBOIS — After having its game switched from St. Marys to DuBois, the DuBois Senior League All-Star baseball team opened District 10 play with a convincing 6-0 win over St. Marys at Showers’ Field.
DuBois actually made the trip to St. Marys to play at Berwind Park, but the field there was deemed unplayble and the game was moved to Showers Field. The game started just after 8:30 p.m. and followed a Legion contest between DuBois and Punxsy/Brookville.
Once things got underway, DuBois got a dominant pitching performance from righty Dylan McCluskey, who tossed 6 1/3 scoreless innings before hitting the 95-pitch limit. McCluskey allowed just three hits while striking out nine and walking three.
Heath Means relieved McCluskey in the seventh and struck out both batters he faced to finish off the victory.
DuBois scored all the runs its needed with a four-run second, with the first crossing home on a bases-loaded walk by Eric Schneider. DuBois then cleared the bases on a grounder hit by McCLuskey that could have been a double play. However, St. Marys threw the ball away at second, allowing all three runners to score to put DuBois up 4-0.
The hosts pushed two more run across in the fifth to all but put the game out of reach. With the win, DuBois advances to play Punxsutawney in Saturday’s winners’ bracket finals in the three-team tournament. That game should be played in Punxsy at 4 p.m.
St. Marys’ biggest threats came early in the game against McCluskey.
The visitors got back-to-back two-out singles from Alec Wehler and Alec Fedus to put runners on the corners in the top of the first. However, DuBois catcher Jordan Frano gunned down Fedus trying to steal second to end the inning.
DuBois also threatened in the first against St. Marys starter Wehler, who walked two batters and hit two others in the frame. But, a caught stealing in the middle of those — along with popup for the final out — helped Wehler escape without any damage being done.
In the second, St. Marys’ Brennen Klawuhn and Adam Piccolo both drew walks with two outs. The pair then moved up a base on a wild pitch, but McCluskey struck out Tylor Herzing looking to strand both in scoring position.
Wehler wasn’t so fortunate in the bottom half of the second.
Noah Bloom led off the inning with an infield single, while Heath Means reached on an error. Tyler McIntosh then drew a walk to load the bases and turn the DuBois order back over to the top.
Schneider followed with a walk of his own to force home special pinch runner Damon Olson before McCluskey’s grounder to short ended up clearing the bases to give DuBois a 4-0 lead.
That spelled the end for Wehler, who was relieved by Hunter Cashmer.
Garrett Prosper and Frano greeted Cashmer with walks to reload the bases, but Cashmer got out of the jam with a home-to-first double play and a strikeout to keep it a 4-0 game.
McCluskey settled in from there, as St. Marys managed just one hit and four baserunners (2 on errors) over the final five innings. Cashmer singled to lead off the third but was promptly picked off first by Frano.
DuBois got a leadoff double from Schneider in the fourth, but he was thrown out trying to steal third with one out by Klawuhn.
DuBois did add two insurance runs in the fifth against Cashmer, who tossed the final five innings.
Frano and Justin Swauger hit back-to-back singles to open the fifth, with Swauger taking third on defensive indifference. With one out, Cashmer worked from the swindup, and Frano took off for home.
Cashmer’s pitch went to the backstop but bounced back to catcher Klawuhn. However, Frano had already stepped on the plate on a steal of home. Bloom then put down a bunt, but Klawuhn couldn’t handle Cashmer’s throw to the plate and Swauger scored to set the eventual final at 6-0.
With the loss, St. Marys drops into the losers’ bracket and awaits the loser of Saturday’s game between DuBois and Punxsy. That losers’ bracket finals game will be played in St. Marys on Monday at 6 p.m.