McKenna’s exit at 8 sends Souderton past Council Rock North in Zone 1-6A, second round – PA Prep Live

Bottom Aspiration >> Chris McKenna said he was “looking for the perfect show”.

Didn’t have to wait long to get one.

With the bases loaded into a goal-free game at the bottom of the eighth inning, the Sodderton Second School baseball player took the first show he got and hooked him into left field to launch a jubilant Big Red celebration.

“I knew it was over when I hit him,” McKenna said. “Especially because even if he catches her, we can raise the mark in third place.”

In a competition in which both teams had stellar performances from starting bowlers, McKenna’s single RBI Indians of District 1-6A advanced in the second round as No. 4 Souderton survived a No. 20 attempt on the Rock North Surprise Board to earn an award. 1-0 victory on Wednesday afternoon at Vic Alderfer Memorial Ball Park.

“This is a baseball playoff — a game with low goals, great bowlers, hitting and going out,” said Sudderton coach Mike Childs. “Then do great plays. The short player rises higher when Carter (Jajila) hits a great ball, and we throw a man [out] in the home panel. This is a playoff baseball, that’s great.

“Unfortunately someone has to go home, I mean after a game like this both teams are playing hard and I’m glad we’re not this time.”

Souderton (18-3) extended his winning streak to 13 games in reaching the county quarter-finals for the first time since 2019. Big Red host No. 5 Pensbury – who defeated No12 Quakertown 8-2 – on Friday afternoon and the winner secured a PIAA Championship berth.

“I really love playing with this team,” said McKenna, who finished with this team 2-4 on the board. “It’s one of my favorite teams to play with and I didn’t really want to finish it today. I think we’re going to run now that we’ve got through that first game. I think that’s going to be our biggest problem.”

While neither bowler ended up making the decision, right-handed Will McCusland and Jadon Tong of Rock North engaged in a high-quality bowler duel over seven rounds with a few great defensive plays from both sides to maintain a 0-0 tie.

McCosland went 7 1/3 innings before hitting the 105-pitch limit, and St. Joseph’s commitment collected 14 hits — hitting the side in both the fifth and seventh — while allowing four strokes and a walk.

“I was really starting to feel my curve game and my Fast Bowl was playing really well, staying in the zone after that,” McCusland said.

Meanwhile, Tang threw seven innings, held four hits and hit nine.

“This is his first year doing shows for us,” said Rock North Council coach Matt Schramm. “So if his leadership is working, he has always given us a chance, he has always kept us in the game.”

Jack Harar made it to Macsland’s final midfield for a singles win to top the eighth, but Jackson Morissette came in and earned a back-to-back fly.

“I trust J-Mo, the kid who came in, he’s a first team in the league and there’s no doubt he can shut it down,” said Morissette’s McCusland. “We’re a hitters team – it would have happened in the end.”

Andrew Schatz drove down from the eighth outing. Schatz broke for the second time when Caden Pasternak offered a quick hit, stole second place with a faulty throw to second allowing Schatz to take third.

Pasternak got on the base after the third hit fell – North did not fall back to first – to put runners into corners. A deliberate walk into Shanley Wall loaded the bases for McKenna, who finally broke the tie by sending the first pitch he saw to the left to bring in Schatz.

He’s a simple team fire plug,” said Childs of McKenna. “He doesn’t say much, he always smiles. And the situation is there, I said ‘You know the next sign that was coming,’ he said ‘Yeah that’s why I swung the first pitch.’ And he goes up one barrel to the fence. He’s generally a smart kid who plays hard and we’ll take that kid at any time in those situations.”

Morissette took a two-thirds win on the hill, while Nick Vosella, who coached Tang in eighth, lost to CR North.

“These guys trust our bowlers, we just got a little bit more runs to help those bowlers out,” Childs said. “They’re doing their jobs and today we did some defensive plays but yeah I’d like to have more running productions.”

The defeat prevents Council Rock North from appearing in the quarter-finals for the first time since 2018 and ends its season at 12-9.

North left his last visit to the Harleysville Community Center on April 18 with a 8-4 win over Souderton to stand 6-1 in games that counted in the District 1 rankings. But North won only two of the next nine, the 8-8 mark is enough to make the postseason in 6A’s 20y And the last seed. North was knocked out by 13th seed Springfield-Delko 4-1 on Monday in the first round.

“The only thing I said to our players was why we went into the qualifiers, because our first half is strong and this team is what showed up today,” Schramm said. “My first-half team is what showed up today. I was proud of that.”

CR North came close to taking the lead in sixth place. With two wins, Tang singles out to end a winning streak for Macausland retired at age 13. Courtesy Tang runner Dominic Wagner went to second on the field. Wagner attempted to score after a foul on defender Josh Hody to start, but right-hander Hunter Wetzel’s throw got Gajila for a mark while Wagner slid home – the call was out and the competition remained 0-0.

“You knew it was going to be a close game on the plate,” Schramm said. “I’m thinking if he throws it a fly he will die but if he wears it we’ll get a chance. He wore it but their hunter does exceptional play and good teams, good players do good games.”

Another superb defensive play that kept things on hold at the bottom of sixth place. McKenna put together a one-off hit while Luke Pollock in the next match got it wrong. Jagiela followed him up by hooking a streak drive to the left side but Austin Stocker jumped from the north to take the ball and then threw in second place in double play at the end of the first half.

“If he doesn’t jump and he’s not as tall as him, that’s a hit and we get the run,” Childs said.

At the bottom of fifth, Schatz arrived with a double fault and then advanced to third after a foul. However, Tang got out of the predicament by making the next batter kick out to him.

“Fast ball, I jumped on you, it was so fast,” McKenna said of Tang. “His lone ball was very good, he attracted us a lot. He got us out of two courts, which is impressive.”

Brian Curry hit a single at the top of the second but McCusland didn’t let the other starters out until she hit the base of Tang by twos in sixth.

After going home to finish game six, McCosland – who went in the April 18 match against CR North four rounds and lost – hit the next four before giving up a single for Harar on the eighth.

“I feel like I really started rolling the reflex ball later in the game and that was really helping me to stay in it,” McCusland said.

District 1-6A, second floor

(4) Souderton 1, (20) Conceal Rock North 0 (8)

Council Rock North 000 000 00-0 4 4

Souderton 000 000 01 – 1 5 1

WP: Jackson Morissette 0.2 IP 0 H 0 R 0 ER 0 BB 0 SO.

LP: Nick Focella 0.0 IP 1 H 1 R 1 ER 2 BB 1 SO.

Souderton: Chris McKenna 2-4, Reserve Bank of India.

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