Peroni, Wheeling Post 1 Shut Down Moundsville, 6-2
WHEELING – It’s been said following a loss – do not to dwell on the defeat.
Moundsville coach Bill Burkett certainly took that to heart as not even five minutes after Post 3 dropped a 6-2 contest to Wheeling Post 1, the coach seemed to be already over it.
”There’s nothing to think about,” he said. ”We just got beat.”
Post 1 rallied behind the arm of Mario Peroni and the bat of Jesse Hartley to earn a victory at I-470, this time as the visiting team because of poor field conditions at their home park.
”We played good baseball (Monday),” Wheeling coach Ricky Szeligo said. ”We had timely hitting, great pitching by Mario and Nick (Naumann), played good defense … all around good baseball.”
Post 1 jumped out to an early lead in the first inning after Russell Schwertfeger turned his leadoff double into the game’s first run.
After a throwing error by the first baseman on a Justice Jackson grounder sent the ball out of play, Schwertfeger was awarded the plate.
Hartley then doubled to drive in Andrew Kowalo, who reached on an error, to give Wheeling a 2-0 lead.
Moundsville cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the inning, but Colton Coss scored on a wild pitch in the second to give Wheeling back its two-run advantage at 3-1.
Peroni then took over for Post 1 as he allowed two hits over the first six frames, while he sat down nine batters.
”He was pounding the zone, throwing strikes, making their team put the ball in play,” Szeligo said of his starter. ”Everything was working for him.”
Wheeling added two more in the fifth when Jackson scored on a fielder’s choice and Dom Ellis doubled to bring in Kowalo.
Moundsville looked like it was finally coming to life in the sixth as Ryan Walton hit a ground-rule double to start the inning.
Walton then scored on a hit by Jake Lucas and a hit batter and a Jeremiah Fromhart single later, the bases were loaded for Post 3 as Naumann, who came on in relief at the top of the inning, and the Post 1 defense looked for a way out with only one out in the frame.
As it turned out, Naumann was the answer.
The West Liberty recruit struck out the next two batters to leave all three runners stranded for Post 3.
”He came on in our relief role and did well,” Szeligo noted of Naumann. ”Usually he’s a starter, but he stepped up as a reliever and did his job.”
Kowalo doubled in the seventh and scored on a Hartley hit to give Wheeling its final run.
For the game, Post 1 totaled eight hits, five of which where for extra bases.
”That’s one thing we’re focused on, hitting the ball and getting extra-base hits,” Szeligo said. ”A lot of our hits are singles, but getting extra-base hits is a plus side.”