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South Western baseball pulls away from Dallastown late

Dallastown spent an hour of its Wednesday practice working on bunt defense. After Thursday's 13-6 loss to South Western, the Wildcats will be spending even more time working on it.

Dallastown entered the sixth inning leading by one run, but it fell behind after failing to record a single out on three South Western bunts. The inning started with a single by Luke Small, then the Mustangs kept adding baserunners by simply trying to sacrifice. First, Josh Fostix reached after no one covered first base on his bunt, then Austin Staub reached and Small scored when Dallastown pitcher Andrew Stambaugh made a wild throw to first base. Two batters later, after Miles Francis drove in the go-ahead run with a base hit, Matt Taylor bunted and sprinted down the line to beat out a throw to first.

"We have a lot of juniors and sophomores that are on this team," Dallastown coach Scott Altland said. "I'm not sure if that's what's showing or what's going on there, but we've now lost three games that we've just gotta figure out a way to close these games out and win them."

The Wildcats had the lead going into the sixth inning of all three losses.

After giving up the lead against South Western, Dallastown continued to struggle. A bases-clearing three-run double by Small put the exclamation point on the Mustangs' eight-run sixth inning and left them in full control heading to the final inning.

"We're down a run, we gotta get the game tied up and we just tried to get guys on base," South Western coach Mike Resetar said. "Opportunities presented to put bunts down and put a little pressure on their defense. They didn't make the plays, our guys hustled and made the plays and it just kind of snowballed. Then their pitcher started pressing a bit, we took advantage of that."

Prior to the big sixth inning, the game went back-and-forth with the lead changing five times in the first five innings. The first inning set the tone for the game as Dallastown jumped out to a 2-0 lead, but South Western responded with a three-run home run to left field by Austin Weaver.

"I just kind of waited," Weaver said of that at-bat. "I usually just sit and wait for a fastball. I saw it on the first pitch and I missed it, then I was like 'if I get it again, I'm not missing it.' I swung with everything I had."

The Mustangs were coming off a 13-3 loss to Waynesboro in which they gave up seven runs in the sixth inning before the game was called by 10-run mercy rule. Weaver's home run gave them their first lead this week.

"It's a game of momentum and it's all about confidence," Resetar said. "You go down two, if we don't score its a totally different scenario. But we come out, we take the lead again and it's a new game, our guys are playing with a different mentality and that's what keeps us in the game. You can't underestimate how important that was."

South Western 13, Dallastown 6

Dallastown2002200—6103South Western300208x—13102

Dt, Riley Hamberger, Andrew Stambaugh (5), Nick Schuler (6) and Cody Somerville. SW, Kyle Raubenstine, Austin Yancheski (6) and John Youngman.

SO-BB — Hambereger 4-4, Stambaugh 2-2, Schuler 0-1, Raubenstine 3-1, Yancheski 3-2; W — Yancheski; L — Stambaugh; 2B — Dt, Tye Golden, Eric Morrison, SW, Luke Small, Josh Fostix; HR — SW, Austin Weaver.