Brocton knocks off No. 1 seed Pine Valley; North Collins routs Ellicottville

OBSERVER?Staff Reports

SOUTH DAYTON – For the first time in five years, the Section 6 Class D championship game will be played without Pine Valley competing. And for the first time in four years, a new champion will be crowned thanks to a stunning upset Thursday as No. 5 Brocton shocked No. 1 Pine Valley, 3-2, in a semifinal game.

Steve Krystofiak was the winning pitcher as he threw a complete-game, one-hitter with 11 strikeouts and just two walks.

“Being a No. 1 seed and not playing Tuesday hurt a lot,” said Pine Valley coach Chris Buczek, as the No. 1 seeded team in Class D received a bye in the first round. “If we played any team, at least we could get the jitters out and a game under our belt with some kind of meaning. We went from nothing to playing a team that just upset another team in a huge way. They were geared and ready to go. It put us back a bit. We leaned on experience all year, but if you don’t get to play or practice, you’re going to be a bit behind.”

The rust was evident early as the Bulldogs scored three runs in the opening inning.

Connor Dolce started off with a single and moved to second on an error. Ryan Johnson followed with an RBI double. Johnson scored on a bases-loaded walk and Nash Delcamp scored off an error.

The Panthers scored both their runs in the third inning as Thomas Raiport hit an RBI single to score Winfred Nelson and Raiport eventually scored off an error to cut the deficit, 3-2.

Pine Valley had one last chance to at least tie the game in the sixth inning as Raiport reached base, stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch with no outs. However, Krystofiak sat down the next three batters in order to escape the jam and preserve the win.

“Krystofiak kept the ball down,” Buczek said. “He threw the ball fast and had a curveball to compliment his fastball. We couldn’t catch up to his fastball today.”

Delcamp was the game’s lone multiple hitter as he had two singles.

“We have four Sectional wins in a row,” Buczek said. “We beat Brocton a number of times throughout that stretch. They had a lot of motivation to beat us.

“Our expectations were to keep it going,” Buczek said of the Sectional title win streak. “It’s something we talk about. Our goal is to be there in the end. People talk about it being a goal, but it’s something we strive for and that’s our goal. It’s really sad to see that come to an end.”

North Collins 17,

Ellicottville 0

NORTH COLLINS – The No. 2 North Collins Eagles were impressive Thursday in a 17-0 thumping of No. 3 Ellicottville in a Section 6 Class D semifinal high school baseball game.

Austin Winter was the winning pitcher as he went five strong innings with just three strikeouts, three walks and one hit. His brother, Dylan Winter, relieved him and did not give up a hit and had one strikeout in two innings of work.

Offensively, the Eagles received balance throughout the lineup as they pounded out 14 hits.

Austin Winter had four hits and as many RBIs while Harley Mehnart was a home run shy of hitting for the cycle as he drove in five runs. Joey English had two hits and David Fera had two hits, including a two-run homer in the fifth inning to make the score 16-0.

North Collins broke the game open with a six-run second inning, highlighted by an Austin Winter RBI single and a Mehnart three-run triple.

“It was a performance we hadn’t shown all year,” North Collins coach Paul Kellner said. “The boys were inspired. We came out fired up. They felt they had something to prove. They had that edge about them and we didn’t stop. We just hope to keep it rolling.”