SHENANDOAH JUNCTION— Finally overcoming its seven strikeouts with its eight stolen bases, Jefferson was able to rally for seven late-inning runs as it overcame the early-game leads of St. Maria Goretti. The late-game rallies led the Cougars to a, 12-7, Sager Field win over the Gaels on Saturday afternoon.
The Cougars were 3-0 overall after winning all three times within a 19-hour time frame.
Even after scoring three times in the third on hits from Andrew Grove and Corey Mangold and two Goretti errors, Jefferson still trailed by a run when it tried again in the bottom of the fourth.
Grove’s second single helped produce a run that made it 5-5.
The Gaels went ahead, 6-5, against pitchers Sean Spotts and reliever Dennis Jackson.
Right-hander Brian Kitner was still on for the Gaels when Jefferson came to bat in the fifth.
Mangold beat out a swinging bunt toward third. Fraser Brown rammed an RBI double to the wall in right-center. Jefferson had created another tie at 6-6.
Michael King’s infield grounder was misplayed for Goretti’s third error and Brown scored the go-ahead run. Matt Ballou walked. Casey Billmyer walked. and Dennis Jackson walked to force in another run.
Grove had a sacrifice fly RBI. And the Cougars were in front, 9-6.
When Jackson walked the first Gael batter in the sixth, he was replaced by Brown — the same pitcher who had closed out an earlier win on Saturday against Wyoming Area (Pa.). Brown got out of the inning unscathed.
Mangold’s triple and hits from Brown and Grove as well as two more Goretti errors (there were five in all), helped Jefferson score another three runs in the sixth.
Brown quickly retired the last three men he saw in the seventh after first walking Josh Moats on four pitches.
Mangold had three of Jefferson’s nine hits. Brown had two hits. And Grove had two hits. Brown drove in three runs and Grove had two RBIs.
Jefferson had literally stolen its way past the Gaels, who were 1-2 overall and struggled itself with eight strikeouts against the four Jefferson pitchers.