By Scott Dudinskie
The Daily Item
NORTHUMBERLAND -- As if it wasn't enough to endure the struggles of Thursday's game, Logan Hall ran a cool-down lap around Pineknotter Park afterwards, alone with his thoughts to relive it all again.
Sunbury/Northumberland allowed a dozen Berwick batters to reach base without hitting their way on -- 10 of them during Hall's five-plus innings on the mound, four of whom scored.
That hospitality, combined with Clay DeNoia's complete game, was enough for Berwick to knock off the Susquehanna Valley League playoffs' top seed, 5-4, in the winners' bracket final.
Sunbury/Norry navigated some turbulence in Wednesday's 10-9 win over Selinsgrove, but there was just too much too often yesterday. In all, there were five hit batsmen, four walks and three errors. Usher that many batters to first base and the opposition needs only a few hits.
"We've given up seven hits the last two days (three to Selinsgrove, four to Berwick). It's the extra plays, the extra pitches, that's putting us in a hole," said Sunbury/Norry manager Travis Fisher. "The things we've done (well) all year just hasn't been the case for us. We weren't walking guys; we weren't hitting batters; we were making the plays. But those things have been killing us of late."
Sunbury/Norry (15-4) dropped into the elimination bracket and will host a game Sunday against a team to be determined. A win would set up a rematch at Berwick (16-3) on Monday, with Sunbury/Norry having to beat the No. 3 seed twice to advance to the Region 5 Tournament.
"A couple days off isn't going to hurt us," said Fisher.
Hall, who hadn't pitched in a month, got the start Thursday. He'd been on the shelf with arm trouble and went through a two-week stretch in which he couldn't play at all and then was limited to a pinch-hitting role.