The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

May 3, 2014

H.S. baseball: Upper Dauphin's Glouner quiets Line Mountain's bats

MANDATA — Kyle Glouner stole a glance at the baseball statistics on the Tri-Valley League website before he left for Saturday’s game.

It was a quick refresher for the Upper Dauphin sophomore, who was familiar enough with Line Mountain’s hitters. Seeing all those .400-plus batting averages pop off the screen gave him plenty of food for thought on the bus ride.

Glouner then went over a scouting report with coach Ryan Lentz and catcher Dylan Lesher before his start.

One can never be too prepared to face the league leaders and Glouner put the intel to good use, limiting the hard-hitting Eagles to a pair of runs on three hits over six innings of the Trojans’ 4-2 win.

“I was aware of them,” Glouner said, “so I tried to work a little bit backwards — throwing off-speed in the beginning of the count and then working off the fastball from there.”

Line Mountain loaded the bases against reliever Aaron Cleveland in the last of the seventh, but the sophomore worked free to avenge his loss to the Eagles in the Zalar Tournament title game three weeks earlier.

Upper Dauphin (12-2, 10-1 TVL) moved into a first-place tie with the Eagles (9-2, 7-1) in the loss column, though the Trojans have won three more TVL games. The teams are scheduled to play again Thursday in Elizabethville.

“They’re always a good hitting team — always — and definitely to hold their top hitters down you’ve got to give credit to Kyle,” said Lentz. “He pitched like we know he’s capable of pitching.”

Each of the top five hitters in the Eagles’ lineup entered the game hitting better than .360. However, that group — Kellen Masser (.417), Brady Michael (.364), Cory Warford (.368), JP Lenker (.484) and Colton Gaw (.361) — went a combined 3-for-11 against Glouner. The runners that scored against him both reached on walks and scored on fielder’s choice plays. He fanned six.

“He got ahead of hitters then he mixed up his pitches pretty well, made some good pitches, and had them off-balance a little bit,” said Eagles coach Jon Raker. “It makes a big difference when you pitch ahead.”

Masser had one of Line Mountain’s hits off Glouner, and he was the only Eagle with two knocks in the game. He singled to lead off the first, but was thrown out at the plate on a Lenker hit to end the inning. Glouner didn’t allow his second hit until their were two outs in the fourth.

“Once you get down 0-1 on him, like Coach told us, you’ve dug yourself a hole already because then he can come back and mix it up like that,” said Masser. “Hats off him.”

Masser started for the Eagles and gave up single runs in the first, third and fourth innings before departing after 90 pitches. He was up in the zone early, and, with two outs in the first, Mac Ney tripled and Glouner doubled him home. Glouner was gunned down at the plate on a Cleveland single.

The Trojans went up 2-0 in the third when Tanner Miller walked, stole second and Kaleb Hoch deftly moved him up by bouncing out to the right side. A Ney grounder plated the run.

“I said to these guys, That’s probably the first time all season that we executed what we work on at practice,” said Lentz of Hoch’s good work. “You can’t draw it up any better than that.”

Miller drew a bases-loaded walk in the fourth to make it 3-0. After the Eagles scored a run in the bottom of the inning, the Trojans got it right back with a Matt Deitrich RBI single.

The Eagles had the heart of the order up in the sixth, but Glouner avoided a leadoff walk with a perfect 3-2 pitch to Warford on the outside black. He then walked Lenker, who came around to score, but stranded two runners. The 35-pitch inning pushed him to 112 and ensured Cleveland would work the seventh against No. 9 hitter Corey Paul (.429) and Line Mountain’s other mashers.

The Eagles filled the bases for Lenker, but Cleveland got him with a pretty 2-2 curve and ended it with a groundout.

“We had our chances — bases loaded, one out and the (number) four hitter coming up,” said Raker. “You can’t ask for much more than that.”

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