The Jump, April 30: Anatomy of a no-hitter
We'll start today with a video. I had the good fortune to be on hand Thursday for West York senior Keenan Stare's no-hitter during the Bulldogs' 5-0 victory over Dover. The no-no was Stare's second in two weeks, and West York's third of the season. You can get a glimpse of it below.
A few post-game thoughts...
First on Stare, who seemed to gather velocity as the game moved on. Going on my own internal radar gun (I may be a dopey sports writer now, but I played baseball up through high school, which wasn't all that long ago), I would guess Stare probably touched the low 80s, and was consistently in the upper 70s. Take those guesstimates for what you will. Anyway, Stare said after the game it took him a while to get loose, and that he didn't have his "big fastball." It looked like he was throwing harder in the seventh inning than he was in the first.
The senior showcased an array of off-speed pitches. He mixed in a 12-6 curveball, a slider and a changeup that had some real diving action to it. Stare walked four, but Dover coach Mat Eckenroth thought the right-hander was "effectively wild." It only took Stare 88 pitches to get through the game, and he struck out eight (all swinging).
Dover might have helped out with some so-so at-bats. I can remember a few times when the Eagles where ahead in the count only to pop up or ground out weakly. Dover only got three balls out of the infield all day. But let's take nothing away from Stare. He used his defenders effectively, stayed calm throughout, and looked simply dominant in the last few innings. Stare struck out the final three batters he faced, and blew the last two away with fastballs. He showed why he will pitch at East Stroudsburg beginning next year.
Which brings us to the next question: Can West York compete to some degree on a district level? Eckenroth said after the game he thought it was possible, considering the Bulldogs' one-two pitching punch of Stare and sophomore Kaden Hepler. West York (12-2, 9-2) is a half-game behind New Oxford in the YAIAA Division II standings.
I'm interested to see how the Bulldogs' hurlers fare on a higher level. Obviously, districts will be a another world compared to some of the competition West York has seen during its regular season schedule (excepting, of course, foes like New Oxford and South Western). Either way, West York would appear to have arms which are quality-enough to keep them in games against some of the better teams they'll play. Can they score enough runs? That remains to be seen.
You can read the game story from Stare's no-hitter here.
Wilkinson signs with Albright College
Former Kennard-Dale linebacker Nate Wilkinson (son of former Rams coach Doug Wilkinson) will attend Albright College next year to play football. Wilkinson had 76 tackles this past season for the Rams, and owns the school record for tackles with 198.
Wilkinson is seated in the below picture with his father, Doug, and mother, Robin Wilkinson. Kennard-Dale athletic director Gary McChalicher and principal Eric Lam are standing in the back row.
Move over, Revs...
With the York Revolution heading out of town for their first road trip of the season, Sovereign Bank Stadium will host a different brand of baseball Friday. Northern York and Biglerville will face off at the Vault at 6 p.m.
My first thought when I saw this matchup was "huh?" But my colleague Steve Navaroli bought up a good point. Because of their proximity to York, families from Dillsburg and Biglerville probably aren't inclined to come out and see the Revs as much. This gives those folks a chance to see the park and, who knows, maybe a few decide to come back in the future. And, of course, the players on both teams get a chance to play on a pristine, minor league field. It's a win-win for all involved.
This isn't the only high school game that will be hosted at Sovereign Bank Stadium in the next few days. William Penn and Spring Grove will play at the park on Monday.
- YDR: In boys' volleyball, Spring Grove dug out of a 2-0 hole to beat Dover.
- Evening Sun: In boys' baseball, Littlestown won a matchup of two the area's top teams, beating Delone Catholic, 4-3.
- YDR video: Our very own Matt Goul was at Red Lion Thursday, where the Central boys' volleyball team swept the Lions.
- Interesting trend story in USA Today about how more and more football players are enrolling early in college. This year, 141 players (a new high) graduated from high school early so they could begin taking college classes and participate in their school's respective spring practices. Of course, former Central York standout and current Penn State defensive lineman Kyle Baublitz was one of those early enrollees.