JACKSON TWP — Both Seneca Valley and Hampton were simply trying to score a run.
The Raiders beat the Talbots to the punch.
Brad Gresock scored on a passed ball in the bottom of the sixth inning and the Raiders held on for a 1-0 non-section victory Monday afternoon at Raider Field.
Gresock had reached base with a double, the third and final hit managed by SV’s offense. That knocked Hampton reliever Derek Layo from the game, but the senior was tagged with the loss because three batters later, Gresock, who had moved to third base after two straight walks, scored the eventual winning tally.
“Brad did a nice job there, setting us up with that one-out double,” said Raiders’ coach Eric Semega.
“Neither team hit the ball well today.”
SV used a trio of pitchers — Troy Martin, Matt Rafferty and Jason Martin — to shut out Hampton on just four hits.
Rafferty, who entered the game in the top of the fourth frame, got the win, but not before a tense top of the sixth.
Hampton’s Tom Radzminski led off the frame with a walk and Eddie Edwards singled to put runners at first and second with no outs.
After Rafferty’s 1-0 pitch to Layo, SV catcher Gianpaul Gonzalez fired a strike to second base, where Radzminski was still five feet off the bag. A rundown ensued and Radzminski was tagged out near third base.
During that sequence, Edwards had snuck into second base. But moments later, he too was picked off for the inning’s second out. Rafferty then fanned Layo to end the inning.
“Poor execution,” said Hampton coach Matt Torrence. “To win against good teams, you have to execute. We didn’t do that today and Seneca Valley (8-2) took advantage of it.”
Rafferty’s outing began with a 20-pitch fourth inning. Radzminski singled and with one out, Ben Vey was hit by a pitch. But the righthander settled down to strike out Steve Dayton and Zach Staszak. In the fifth frame, Rafferty fanned two of the four batters he faced.
“It took a while, but once I got going, I felt pretty good on the mound,” he said. “I’ve been working on my slider and was able to locate it today.”
Vey pitched the first three innings for the Talbots and allowed just one hit and one walk.
“With this being a non-section game, we wanted Ben to throw between 50 and 60 pitches,” said Torrence. “His curveball and slider kept Seneca’s hitters off-balance.”
“Obviously, we want to win,” said Semega. “But our main goal in a non-section game is to get better. Against good pitchers, our guys have to understand that they may have to adjust their swings.”
Hampton 000 000 0 — 0 4 1
Seneca Valley 000 001 x — 1 3 0
W: Matt Rafferty 3 IP (5K, 1BB). L: Derek Layo 1.1 IP (0K, 1BB). S: Jason Martin 1 IP (1K, 0BB).
Hampton (9-2): Charlie Winek 1B, Tom Radzminski 1B, Eddie Edwards 1B, Brandon Marsonek 1B
Seneca Valley (8-2): Brad Gresock 2B R, Zach Spangler 1B, Dan Barna 1B
Today: Seneca Valley at North Hills