WEST LAWN, Pa.—On a team filled with talented and experienced seniors, it was a freshman who stole the show in leading Keystone College to its tenth straight Colonial States Athletic Conference (CSAC) title Saturday afternoon at Owls Field at Ted Palka Park.
After the Giants lost an 8-7 heartbreaker in the first of two championship games against Gwynedd Mercy today, freshman Nathan Hinkley (Bradenton, Fla./Saint Lucie West Centennial) went the distance in the nightcap, striking out seven and limiting the Griffins to just five hits as Keystone wrapped up the title with a 4-2 victory.
Senior Bray Curreri (Eldred, N.Y./Eldred Central) was named the tournament's most valuable player after following up yesterday's 4-hit, 5-RBI performance with four hits and three runs scored today. It was a key defense play, however, that sealed his MVP performance.
In the seventh with Keystone holding on to a 3-2 lead, Curreri made a diving stop on a ground ball and threw out a runner at third base after the Griffins' Sachel Sciarretta tripled to open the inning. Curreri's defensive gem prevented Sciarretta from scoring and Hinkley followed it up with back-to-back strikeouts to swing the momentum back in Keystone's favor.
Sophomore catcher Ryan Callahan (Highland Mills, N.Y./Monroe-Woodbury) had with three hits and Curreri and juniors Johann Paniagua (Bronx, NY/James Monroe Campus High School) and Ronald Medina (Bronx, NY/Dewitt Clinton) finished with two each for Keystone, now 32-10. With today's win, Hinkley improved to 6-1.
Tommy Nardini and Sciaretta led the Griffins, now 21-14, with two hits apiece.
In the first game, Gwynedd Mercy rallied with three runs in the eighth and one in the ninth to erase an early 3-0 deficit and take an 8-6 lead into the bottom of the ninth. The Giants closed the gap to one on a sacrifice fly by Medina and had runners on second and third before junior relief pitcher David Tatoian got a strikeout to end the rally and seal the victory.
Keystone committed four costly errors, which the Griffins cashed in by scoring three unearned runs.
Senior Eric Drzewiecki (Hellertown, Pa./Phillipsburg) led the Giants with three hits, including a double and a triple, and junior Chris Panzarella (Hazle Township, Pa./Hazleton Area) and Paniagua contributed two hits apiece.
Keystone news & notes
- Curreri raised his batting average to .312 this weekend after coming through with eight hits in three games
- Giants are ranked third in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic region
- In the first game, McFadden took the loss despite striking out 10 batters and giving up only five earned runs in eight innings; he also threw 155 pitches