Hazleton splits series at Williamson

Jacob Taschler loads up his swing
Jacob Taschler loads up his swing

Media, Pa. - Hazleton hit the road on Sunday to face Williamson College of the Trades in baseball's second double-header of the season. The Lions came away with a split on the afternoon, winning game two by the score of 7-1 after falling in the opening matchup to Williamson 2-0. 

Game One: Penn State Hazleton - 0, Williamson College of the Trades - 2

The Lions were stymied by the Mechanics in the series opener, specifically by Williamson ace Bryan Archambo who struck out seven Nittany Lion hitters in the outing. Hazleton was limited to just two base runners through the first three innings of play and earned their first hit of the afternoon in the top half of the fourth frame. Williamson was equally restricted at the dish but drew first blood in the bottom of the fourth inning on what would eventually become the winning score. A one out error in the Hazleton infield gave the Mechanics their second base runner of the game and with two outs Hunter Killinen knocked in the first score of the game with a triple to center field on a play that sent the Hazleton center fielder hurdling into the fence. Williamson would take that one run cushion into the bottom half of the sixth inning and tack on an insurance run with a productive ground ball out. Hazleton tried to kick start the offense in the their final at bat with back to back two-out hits, but a line out off the bat of freshman Mason Goida (Lansford, Pa.) ended the game. 

Hazleton out-hit the Mechanics in game one but the timely swings all went in Williamson's favor. Freshman James Conza (Bushkill, Pa.) led Hazleton with a pair of hits in four trips to the plate. Sophomores Brandon Hardiman (Hunlock Creek, Pa.) and Rafael Santos each went 1-for-3 to round out the offense in game one. Junior Colin Stauffer (West Hazleton, Pa.) pitched well in defeat, tossing 5.2 innings for Hazleton, allowing just one earned run on three hits and striking out eight Williamson hitters. 

Game Two: Penn State Hazleton - 7, Williamson College of the Trades - 1

Hazleton flipped the script in game two and put up a pair of scores in the first two innings of the game. Conza led off the game with a single and a stolen base before being driven in by Colin Stauffer with two outs. After shutting out Williamson in the bottom half of the first, sophomore Jacob Taschler (Palmerton, Pa.) singled and advanced with two outs in the inning, coming around to score on an infield miscue by the Mechanics to give Hazleton a 2-1 edge. Both squads would go scoreless over the next four innings and on the Hazleton side, sophomore Scott Shamany (Hazleton, Pa.) was dealing. Shamany posted zeros on the board through the first six innings, allowing zero runs and no hits over that stretch. Hazleton chased Williamson's pitcher from the game after the sixth frame and went on to add five runs in the top of the seventh with RBI base hits from Stauffer, sophomore Eric Weaver (Hyattsville, Md.) and Brandon Hardiman to blow the game open and secure their third win of the young season. 

Despite being chased from the game after the no-hitter was broken up in the seventh, Scott Shamany ended the day with no runs allowed on just one hit, while fanning eight Mechanics. James Conza stayed hot, delivering three hits in four trips to the plate with two runs scored, with Taschler adding a 2-for-3 effort at the plate with two runs scored to round out game two's top performers. 

Next up: The Lions are back on the diamond on Wednesday, March 4 when they travel to Palmyra, Pa. to take on Central Penn College in a two game set beginning at 2:00 p.m. at the In the Net Sports Complex.