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Frewsburg, Pine Valley defend titles

It was a night for repeat champions at Diethrick Park on Thursday as both Frewsburg and Pine Valley successfully defended their Section VI crowns.

Frewsburg struck early and often to capture its sixth straight Section championship by defeating Westfield, 10-2, in the Class C final.

In Class D, top-seeded Pine Valley capitalized on a number of North Collins miscues for a 6-2 victory.

The top-seeded Bears (19-4) were able to wiggle out of a first inning jam when No. 3 Westfield (17-6) put runners at the corners with two outs. Frewsburg starter Connor Grey recorded a strikeout to end the threat.

Frewsburg immediately responded with offense of its own. Thad Johnson tripled to lead off the inning and scored on a passed ball. Back-to-back hits from Bryce Peterson and an RBI double by Dane Johnson made it 2-0.

The Bears sent all nine men to the plate and put the game out of reach with a four-run third. Frewsburg picked up four hits in the frame and benefited from two Westfield errors.

The offense was more than enough for Grey, who struck out 16 batters in the complete game effort while scattering five hits and not walking a batter.

"Connor was pretty untouchable today," Frewsburg coach Jay Grann said. "He's just a stud pitcher. You give him the ball and good things happen."

Grey is one of six Frewsburg seniors who have not tasted Sectional defeat over their varsity careers.

"That's just impressive no matter what the sport," Grann said. "It goes to their hard work and dedication. They love the game and they practice and play hard. They get everything they deserve."

Thad Johnson finished a double shy of the cycle, including a two-run home run in the fifth.

In Class D, Pine Valley (18-4) put up two-out offense in the first inning by scoring runs on a wild pitch and an error to take the early 2-0 lead.

Pine Valley added two more runs in the third with the aid of only one hit, an RBI single from Lyle Howard.

"That made the statement," Pine Valley coach Chris Buczek said of his team's early runs. "You could see how much more relaxed our kids were after that."

Offense from the bottom of the order put the game on ice for the Panthers. Joey Gierszewski's two-run single in the fifth plated Zack Fancher and Tyler Swanson for a six-run advantage.

Pine Valley starter Fancher, who earned the win in last year's Section final as well, remained in control for the rest of the game. The senior scattered five hits while striking out 10 and walking five. North Collins had only one extra base hit during the contest.

The Eagles (18-4) were plagued with defensive lapses, committing five errors in the game. Starter Kyle Sherman struck out six batters in four innings of work.

Frewsburg will play its Far West Regional at a site to be determined on Tuesday. Pine Valley will play its regional in Jamestown.