DuBOIS — The DuBois American Legion baseball team committed five errors on Thursday evening and never really got its offense going in an 11-3 loss to Punxsutawney in Jefferson County League action at Showers’ Field.
“This is a long week,” said DuBois coach Chuck Ferra. “We’ve played three games this week and we’re missing a lot of kids this week. (Ryan) Pasternak and (Braden) Paulinellie weren’t here most of the week because of the Lezzer (Classic) game, a couple kids on vacation. We’ve had to scrape together nine guys these last three games. They’re here. They’re playing.
“Errors and walks killed us. It’s killed us in every game this week. We have to cut down mistakes and get better at hitting.”
DuBois managed to register just four hits in the contest, with Ryan Radaker going 3-for-3 on the night. Brendon Foley got the only other hit for Post 17.
Punxsy earned its first run of the game against DuBois starter Peter Foradora as Lucas Burkett singled, Lance Pennington drew a walk and Joey DiPietro was hit by a pitch in the top of the first. With two outs, Logan Johnston worked a bases loaded walk to score Burkett.
Punxsy put together its first big inning in the top of the third. Lance Pennington got all the way to third base on an error by the DuBois left fielder. After a bounceout back to Foradora on the mound, Aaron Park doubled to deep center field to bring home Pennington.
Johnston followed that up with a two-run homer out near the scoreboard in right field to give Punxsy a 4-0 lead.
The visitors tacked on one more run in the top of the fourth on a Pennington groundout to score Caleb Smith before they put up three more in the top of the fifth.
With one out and a runner on first, Ben Reitz dropped down a bunt single and Park made it to third on a throwing error by the DuBois third baseman. Ben Caun followed with an RBI single.
With runners at second and third with two outs, Caleb Smith reached on an error to bring in two more runs, giving Punxsy an 8-0 lead.
Reitz, the Punxsy starting pitcher, had only allowed one hit through four innings, but Post 17 cracked the scoreboard twice in the bottom of the fifth.
Mitchell Ferra hustled out a fielder’s choice to take away a double play that would have been the end of an inning, but beat it out, which allowed Ethan Long to score.
Schneider also scored later in the inning on a wild pitch, cutting the Punxsy lead to 8-2.
Punxsy scored its last three runs in the top of the sixth off Foley, who came on in relief, thanks to an RBI single from Park and a two-run double from Caun. Pennington also doubled to open the frame.
Lucas Burkett relieved Reitz in the bottom of the sixth and gave up an RBI single to Radaker, which scored Pasternak for the final run of the game. Pasternak, who reached on a fielder’s choice, also stole a base in the inning.
Reitz allowed two unearned runs on three, hits, walked three and struck out three for the win.
Foradora allowed five earned runs on seven hits, walked four and struck out one in his five innings of work. Foley gave up three earned runs on three hits and walked two in his two innings on the mound.
Park and Caun were both 2-for-4 to lead Punxsy.
The two teams also played on Wednesday evening in Punxsutawney, with Punxsy/Brookville taking a 5-1 win. Park scattered six hits over six-plus innings and Johnston hit a two-run homer to lead Punxsy.
Park was effective, especially early on, limiting DuBois to just two hits through the first four innings while recording six of his seven strikeouts during that time. He also never walked a batter. He was lifted with two outs in the top of the seventh inning for Caun, who recorded the final out of the game.
Offensively, Park doubled to lead off the fourth inning with his team leading 1-0 before Johnston homered to give Brookville/Punxsy a 3-0 lead. Three errors proved to be costly for DuBois as Brookville/Punxsy eventually scored as a result of all three.
DuBois got its lone run in the top of the seventh inning when Foradora singled, went all the way to third on an errant pickoff attempt by Park and scored on an Ethan Long groundout. Ferra, Colin Read, Drew Bankovich, Drew Buskirk and Long also singled for Post 17.
Read suffered the complete game loss on the mound, giving up just two earned runs on six hits and one walk while striking out one.
The two teams are both back in action on Sunday evening. Punxsy travels to Clearfield, while DuBois visits Curwensville.