BROCKWAY — The DuBois Little League All-Stars were unable to overcome a strong combined pitching performance from Harborcreek in a 4-2 loss Saturday afternoon at Taylor Memorial Park.
A trio of Harborcreek pitchers combined to allow six hits spread out over six innings, while the away side pounded out 10 hits of their own on the way to victory.
“We’re tipping our hats to the Harborcreek pitching, those kids had above average fastballs and nice off speed and they kept us off our toes there” DuBois manager T.J. Wingard said. “We didn’t string enough hits together and that was a good performance by their (Harborcreek) kids.”
Harborcreek got off to a strong start in the top of the first to take the early lead off of DuBois starter Brayden Fox.
Haden Dylewski led off by reaching on an infield single to short before reaching second on a sacrifice bunt by Alex Manenda and moving over to third on a groundout to second by Jake Rocky.
Heath Betza followed by ripping a pitch to the right-field fence for a double to score Dyewski for the game’s first run.
The game remained 1-0 into the fourth before Harborcreek added a pair of runs to its lead.
The bottom third of the order got things done as Parker Irwin led off by drawing a walk before Noah Sprickman reached on a bunt single down the third-base line.
Toby Vahey then pinch hit in the nine hole, as he laid down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners up to second and third.
Leadoff batter Dylewski then came through with his third hit of the game, driving a single into right field to score Irwin.
Manenda followed by hitting a sacrifice fly to center field as Sprickman beat the throw to the plate to bring the score to 3-0.
Harborcreek starter Betza continued to roll through the DuBois batting order in the fourth, as he retired the first two batters before exiting the game after reaching the 50-pitch limit.
Dylewski then took the mound, as he was greeted by a solo home run to right-center by Danny Dixon to trim the lead to one.
Noah Farrell then drew a walk before Carter Kos hit a pinch-hit single into right field as DuBois looked to cut further into the lead.
Instead, Dylewski ended the threat by forcing a groundout to second to send the game into the fifth with a 3-1 scoreline.
Betza led off the top of the fifth with a single back up the middle for Harborcreek, before a fly out to center field resulted in the first out of the frame.
Carter Dougan followed by driving a single into right field, as Betza was able to score on the play when the ball got by DuBois’ right fielder.
In the bottom half Bryson Delaney led off by driving the first pitch of the inning into center field for a single.
After the next two batters were retired by way of a strikeout and fly out to right, Fox came through with a two-out RBI on a double to the fence in left-center field to bring the score to 4-2.
Fox was stranded there when Harborcreek reliever Manenda forced a grounder to first to send the game into the final inning.
Farrell retired the Harborcreek side in order in the top of the inning as DuBois looked to rally in the bottom of the sixth.
After a strikeout started the inning, Farrell singled to center to bring the tying run to the plate with one away.
Manenda then got the next two batters to line out to short and then a strikeout to end the game.
“We’ll be alright, we’re gonna come back tomorrow and hopefully see what we can do against Clarion,” Wingard said.
“I think we are the only team up here that has 13 (players), I’d keep these 13 regardless, these kids work hard every day, they’re fun to be around and we’re gonna come back but we just didn’t hit well enough today.”
DuBois will now face Clarion in an elimination game today at 2 p.m. while Harborcreek will battle Meadville at 4:30 p.m. with a spot in the title game on the line.