SELINSGROVE — Griffin Harrington had just put the finishing touches on Warrior Run’s elimination bracket win, helping his team earn a berth in the District 13 Major Division final opposite Central Columbia.
“It feels good,” Harrington said. “Hard work pays off.”
Between batting and pitching, Harrington put in a full double-shift of work Friday evening. He clubbed two home runs, including a walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the fifth, while pitching a complete-game, four-hitter in the 12-1 decision at East Snyder Park’s DeWire Field.
Only days ago, Danville had knocked Warrior Run from the winners bracket with a 15-5 victory. This time, the script was flipped.
“Their (Warrior Run’s) pitcher was different this time around,” said Danville coach Scott Schultz. “He came out wheeling and shut us down. He did a heck of a job.”
Danville appeared to try to make it a shootout early, collecting a pair of hits in each of its first two at-bats off Harrington and bumping his pitch count to 40.
Cole Duffy ripped a double and then scored two batters later on a Jack Maloyed infield single. Carter Raup and Daniel Walker each singled in the second to start what would become a bases-loaded threat. However, a fielder’s choice ended the inning.
“We had a couple different options of who we could start,” said Warrior Run coach Derrick Zechman. “I was undecided who we would start. Boy, did we make the right decision.”
Harrington made it 2-1 with a two-run home run in the first inning, and Cohen Zechman added an RBI single three batters later. Danville couldn’t keep Warrior Run off the scoreboard in any of the five innings. The hosts extended the lead to 4-1 through two innings, 6-1 after three, and 8-1 after four.
That set the stage for the bottom of the fifth, when three consecutive singles loaded the bases for Harrington. He took the first pitch from Lincoln Diehl over the fence just left of center, ending the game with one big swing of the bat.
“We were coming back (in the last game) and wanted to have a good game,” Harrington said. “I saw the ball well and felt that I could hit anything.”
It turns out Warrior Run’s team had the same feeling. The hosts collected a tournament-high 12 hits for the game, spread up and down the lineup.
“We couldn’t ask for a better game,” Zechman said. “We really focused and learned our lesson from the last Danville game. We tried to win every inning, stay away from big innings, and limit mistakes.
“This was a great team win.”
DISTRICT 13 MAJOR DIVISION
At East Snyder Park, Selinsgrove
Warrior Run 12, Danville 1
Warrior Run`312`24`— 12-12-0
Jack Maloyed, Matt Acor (2), Cayne Stroup (4), Lincoln Diehl (5) and Wyatt Shultz. Griffin Harrington and Gabe Engel.
WP: Harrington. LP: Maloyed.
Danville: Cade Duffy 1-for-3, 2B, run; Jack Maloyed 1-for-1, RBI; Carter Raup 1-for-2; Daniel Walker 1-for-1
Warrior Run: Griffin Harrington 4-for-4, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 3 runs; Chase Knorr 2-for-4, run; Tyler Ulrich 1-for-2, 2 walks, 2 runs; Brayden Gower 2-for-3, RBI; Zamir Keyes 1-for-1, RBI; Cohen Zechman 1-for-2, RBI, run; Jaden Hall 1-for-1