By Mike Wertman firstname.lastname@example.org
Medina Journal-Register — BATAVIA — Unable to build on a first inning lead, Lyndonville dropped a narrow 3-2 decision to Pine Valley Tuesday in the Class D Far West Regional at Dwyer Stadium.
Section V Class D champion Lyndonville jumped out to a quick 2-0 first inning lead on a bases loaded walk to James Ianni and a wild pitch. Back-to-back lead-off singles by Justin Edwards and Brandon Schoolcraft and a walk to Ty Hrovat loaded the bases to set up the threat.
However, Lyndonville left the bases loaded as Pine Valley pitcher Tyler Swanson registered a clutch inning ending strikeout. Swanson blanked the Tigers the rest of the way on just four more hits with five more strikeouts.
“We got a very good start but after that we just didn’t stroke the ball,” said Lyndonville coach Shane Price. “Their kid kept us off balance.”
Offensively, Section VI champion Pine Valley got only five hits off of Edwards who went the distance on the mound for Lyndonville striking out seven and walking one, but the Panthers took advantage of Tiger errors to get back in the game.
“Justin again came up big for us,” said Price. “But at this level a couple of mistakes can really hurt you and the errors hurt us.”
Pine Valley broke onto the scoreboard with a run in the fifth inning on two errors and a single.
Another error then opened the door for what proved to be a game deciding two-run Pine Valley sixth inning rally which also featured three straight singles. A single by Swanson which capped off that uprising drove in what proved to be the game winning run.
“They hit the ball when they needed to,” said Price. “That was a big hit.”
Lyndonville, which left a runner stranded in both the fifth and sixth innings after singles by Schoolcradt and Austin Buckland, tried to get a last ditch rally going in the bottom of the seventh. With one out, Edwards and Schoolcraft both reached by banging out their second singles of the day. However, the Tigers left the runners stranded at first and second as Swanson quickly got out of the jam via a fly out to left and a game ending strikeout propelling the Panthers into the state semifinals.
The contest was a rematch of the 2011 Far West Regional which saw Lyndonville defeat Pine Valley 12-6.
Lyndonville advanced to the regional by nipping Fillmore 1-0 for the Section V Class DD title and then by downing Whiteville 8-3 in the Section V Class D state qualifier.
Lyndonville, which finishes the season at 16-8, was supported by a large crowd.
“I just can’t say enough about the great community support we’ve gotten,” said Price. “They really support our teams and that says a lot about our community. And over the past week we’ve really made some memories for these boys. They had just a great season.”