West York makes late push for district baseball playoffs
West York found itself in a precarious position 12 games into the season, when the Bulldogs were sitting on a 5-7 record.
The Bulldogs were multiple games behind YAIAA Division II leader Gettysburg. And even the district tournament seemed a long shot after dropping a 2-1, extra-inning loss to Dallastown on April 21.
But then, the club slapped together a 5-2 run, including winning all five division games. Gettysburg, meanwhile, stumbled down the stretch. And suddenly the Bulldogs found themselves in first place in the division heading into last Wednesday's game against the Warriors, which was the final divisional game for both teams.
Gettysburg claimed that back-and-forth affair, 5-4, leaving the teams with identical 10-4 division records. Gettysburg will represent the division in the YAIAA tournament next week by virtue of winning both head-to-head games.
"We struggled early on, but we kept fighting every game," West York coach Scott Erickson said. "We put together a good run and that's put us in the position that we are in."
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As of Tuesday, the Bulldogs held the No. 10 spot in the District 3 Class 4A power rankings. The top 10 teams qualify for the district tournament.
"We've been doing the math and I'll think we'll be in even after losing (Wednesday)," Erickson said. "We'll keep practicing and preparing like we'll be playing on May 22 in districts."
The season is over for both the Bulldogs and the No. 11 team in the rankings, Northern Lebanon. Games played through Wednesday will count toward the district playoffs.
Regardless, the forecast is bright for the Bulldogs. Only one of the team's usual starters is a senior, pitcher-outfielder Zach Gettys, who has had a fantastic season both at the plate and on the mound. He's batting .476 with 14 RBIs and has posted an 8-0 record with a 1.65 ERA and 76 strikeouts in 51 innings on the hill.
Other key cogs for the West York lineup have been junior Colton Kubicki (.300, 15 RBI), junior Jacob Mease (14 RBI) and sophomore Justin Wetzel (.309).
"I push these guys everyday in practice and they really grind," Erickson said. "They work hard everyday to get better."