Here’s a quick look at the quarterfinal round of the District 2 Class AAA and Class AA playoffs
Moving on: Class AAA — (1) Valley View, (3) Berwick, (4) Abington Heights and (7) Scranton Prep. Class AA — (1) Hanover Area, (3) Dunmore, (10) Lakeland and (13) Holy Redeemer.
Upsets: Class AAA — (7) Scranton Prep over (2) Dallas, 6-0. Class AA — (10) Lakeland over (2) Mountain View, 3-2; (13) Holy Redeemer over (5) Holy Cross, 5-4.
Roche tosses no-hitter: He didn’t have a start to his name this season nor a good UCL in his elbow, but Lakeland’s Chris Roche threw a gem in the Chiefs’ District 2 Class AA game against Mountain View on Tuesday. Roche pitched a no-hitter, with eight strikeouts and one walk. Roche had a tight breaking ball and a heavy fastball working. Here’s the game summary through the fifth inning: Hit by pitch. Strikeout. Hit by pitch. Fielder’s choice and interference on a baserunner. Strikeout. Strikeout. Strikeout. Groundout. Groundout. Groundout. Groundout. Foul out. Groundout. Fly out. Pop out. Groundout. That’s a pretty dominant five-inning stretch. The Chiefs have three no-hitters in the District 2 tournament over the last two seasons (Kyle Kiehart and Eric Grabowski–Sean Pittack last year).
Fiala deals two-hitter: Scranton Prep’s Nate Fiala threw a stellar game of his own: a two-hitter that pushed Prep past second-seeded Dallas, 6-0, in the District 2 Class AAA tournament. Fiala walked two and only had two strikeouts, so it looks like he was threw a lot of strikes and let the Cavaliers’ athletic defense go to work. Dan Ryan had three hits and three runs scored, Kevin Bannon drove in three runs and Nick Preston drove in two to back up their pitcher’s outing. Prep has yet to allow a run in the District 2 tourney (2 games), and has outscored its opponents 15-1 in its last three games.
Cougars walk off: Top-seeded Valley View needed extra innings to defeat No. 9 Pittston Area in Class AAA. Connor Kranick scored the winning run in the bottom of the 10th on a wild pitch.
Zilla goes the distance; Rinaldi drives in six: Josh Zilla continued his stellar season with a complete-game effort in Dunmore’s win over Nanticoke in Class AA. Zilla struck out seven and allowed one earned run. Zilla is now 7-0 on the year, with 61 strikeouts and a 0.52 ERA. The Bucks scored nine runs in the game and Corey Rinaldi drove home six of them on three hits.
Lackawanna League into the finals: With Abington Heights and Valley View matching up in Thursday’s Class AAA semifinal, at least one Lackawanna League team will be in the District 2 championship game. It could be an all-Lackawanna League title game if Scranton Prep can get past Berwick. The Lackawanna League will also have a representative in the Class AA title game, with Lakeland and Dunmore playing in a semifinal Thursday, and in the Class A final, with Lackawanna Trail and Blue Ridge squaring off today. It could be two Lackawanna League teams in Class A if Old Forge beats MMI Prep. A Delaware Valley win over Wyoming Valley West in the Class AAAA tourney today would give the Lackawanna League at least one team in each of the four championship games.