Needing a home sweep of Lawrenceville to capture its fourth straight Mid-Atlantic Prep League Championship, the varsity baseball team did just that on May 11. After a tough battle for an 8-5 victory in game one, the Blue Storm rode a six-run sixth inning to a 7-1 win in game two.
Mercersburg and Lawrenceville came into the game with identical 6-2 MAPL records, and a sweep by either team would result in an outright championship. Had the Blue Storm and Big Red split the doubleheader, both would have shared the title with Blair in a three-way tie. But Michael Collins '14 and Vinny Torres '15 each pitched complete-game victories to lead the Storm to the championship.
Mercersburg jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead in the first inning of game one, and held the Big Red scorless through three innings. In the top of the fourth, Lawrenceville mounted a three-run rally keyed by two consecutive suicide-squeeze bunts to pull within 4-3.
The Storm struck back with a two-out rally in the bottom of the inning. Kenny Guerrero '14 lined a triple to right that drove in a run, and Brad Wastler '14 followed with an opposite-field double to plate Guerrero for a 6-3 edge. Lawrenceville pulled to within 6-5 with two runs in the fifth, but single runs for Mercersburg in the fifth and sixth innings clinched the game one win. Collins struck out 11 and walked only two to pick up the victory on the mound.
In game two, Torres gave up only four hits and one run while recording five strikeouts. The teams were scoreless after three innings, but Mercersburg scored a run in the fourth and six times in the sixth to power through for the win.
Wastler, Guerrero, and Erik Smeltz '14 each had two hits on the day and Chris Thomas '14 drove in four runs.
"I'm real proud of these kids," Mercersburg head coach Karl Reisner said. "We had a tough start this season, but we stuck with it."
After starting the season 1-6, the baseball team now has an overall record of 12-8, 8-2 in the MAPL. The Blue Storm heads to Kiski Friday, May 16, for its final game of the regular season, which begins at 6 p.m. in Saltsburg, Pa.
Founded in 1893 in the heart of Pennsylvania and the Mid-Atlantic, Mercersburg is a private, coed, college preparatory boarding school with approximately 435 students (15 percent are day), grades 9-12 and postgraduate.
We offer 170 courses, including AP and Honors, more than $7 million in financial aid, 26 varsity sports, and a state-of-the-art performing and visual arts center. Located 90 minutes from Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, and within easy driving distance of New York City, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. 300 East Seminary Street, Mercersburg, PA 17236 GPS Address: 10951 Buchanan Trail West, Mercersburg, PA 17236 717-328-6173