Mounts rally with 10-spot in sixth to knock off Boone

By on March 27, 2013

By: TODD RUTH Review Sports Editor, Staff Writer

The start was rather inauspicious. However, the finish was a typical Ephrata baseball work of art.

Ephrata fell behind visiting Daniel Boone, 6-0, in Saturday’s season opener at War Memorial and the Mounts were seemingly headed for a loss.

Ace pitcher Brandon Miller uncharacteristically struggled to find the strike zone in his debut and made it through just three innings, walking seven before giving way to the pen.

Defensively, the Mounts committed three errors behind Miller, and offensively the Mounts were held hitless through the first three frames.

However, baseball games can certainly turn on a dime. And that’s exactly what happened.

The bullpen of Ethan Sipe (3 IP, 2K, 0 BB) and Seth Griffith (1 IP) kept the Blazers at bay the rest of the way. And offensively, the Mounts woke up in a big way.

While Ephrata only had nine hits for the contest, the Mounts made the most of their remaining opportunities. And trailing 7-4 in the sixth, Ephrata exploded for 10-unanswered runs in the frame to take the lead for good.

The big blow in the 10-run inning came off the bat of Miller, who ripped a two-run triple as he led the way with three RBI and a pair of hits to pace the Mounts.

Griffith came on in the top of the seventh to retire the Blazers in order as the Mounts won a wacky 14-7 decision.

"Well, if you were at the ballpark for Opening Day, you got your money’s worth and probably some wind burn," Ephrata Coach Adrian Shelley said Tuesday. "Wow, that was an unpredictable start, middle, and ending. I was just hoping the opportunity would present itself for us to tie it in the seventh and go extra innings. If you were there, and saw that outcome after the way the first part of the game unfolded, then you should play the lottery or become a weather man."

Ephrata, which returns just three starters off its Section Two championship squad of a year ago, grew a lot in that one game, according to the Coach.

"The take-away for us is that all of the hard work during the off-season to build a solid ballclub and to prepare to successfully compete right out of the gates, seemed to pay dividends in the late innings," he said. "We definitely had a rocky start and showed some inexperience, which we expected. But, we fought through it. I thought our overall team speed and depth, using guys off the bench, and then having those players immediately contribute; proved to be the biggest factors in reversing the end result."

In addition to Miller’s big offensive day, Josh Gehman knocked in a run with a pair of hits. Ethan Sipe, Andre Good, Colin Albright, Jarred Martin Paul Larusso and Brady Sipe also contributed key base knocks in the victory.

Up next, Ephrata will host Mid-Penn power Cumberland Valley this Saturday afternoon, beginning at 2:15 p.m., before heading into Section Two play April 1 at home vs. Solanco (4:15 p.m.).

Cocalico opened its 2013 seasonFriday afternoon at home with a 5-1 non-league loss to Conrad Weiser.

Connor Tom tripled and Jake Riegel added a key double to pace the Scouts.

Pitcher Nick Schoener got the win on the mound for CW.

Cocalico was scheduled to be back in action Tuesday but their game vs. Lancaster Mennonite was postponed due to inclement weather. No make-up date was set as of press time.

The Eagles will travel to New Holland to face Garden Spot on Thursday, beginning at 4:15 p.m. More MOUNTS RALLY, page B-6

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