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Plummer pitches Blue Devils to District VI-A championship

Bellwood-Antis senior left-hander Adam Plummer limited Bishop McCort to three singles and his teammates provided all the help he needed in claiming the school’s first district baseball championship since 1989. Bellwood-Antis scored three runs in the third inning at Veterans Memorial Field in Altoona, one in the seventh and two more in the sixth for a 6-1 win. The Blue Devils were seeded sixth coming into the tournament, Bishop McCort was fifth.
Sophomore third baseman Chris Alley got the Blue Devils started. B-A (18-4) suffered through a three-game losing streak near the end of the regular season, but righted themselves to win the final four regular season games and have sprinted through the District VI Class A tournament outscoring four opponents by a combined 20-5 total.
Alley lined the first pitch from Bishop McCort starter Mark Swetz into left field for the Blue Devils’ first hit of the game, with one out in the third inning. Ricky Shannon worked Swetz for a walk to put runners at first and second. Zach Stere singled up the middle to score Alley with the first tally of the game. Plummer helped himself by blooping a base hit that fell in between three fielders in short left. Shawn Weiand ripped a single to left to score Shannon and Derrick Miller was safe on a fielder’s choice that scored Stere.
Bishop McCort came back to cut the deficit to 3-1 on a double steal in the bottom of the frame. Swetz led off with a single past Alley at third base and went to second on a wild pitch. Shortstop Mike Stetz beat out an infield hit to put runners at first and third. Stetz swiped second and on the delayed steal, when catcher Shawn Weiand threw to second base, Swetz came home to score. Plummer struck out the next two McCort hitters to prevent the threat from producing any further runs.
Plummer retired 14 of the final 15 batters, with Chad Deihl reaching first base with two outs in the bottom of the seventh on Plummer’s only walk of the contest. Plummer fanned a total of 12 batters, including striking out the side in the second and third and seemed to get stronger as the game went on with two Ks in both the sixth and seventh innings to close down the contest, while walking just one Crusher. Indeed against Plummer, Crushers hardly seemed like a politically correct name for the Bishop McCort team
Plummer (6-0) has struck out 79 hitters in 55 and 1/3 innings this season. His ERA drops to 1.64 and the opposition is hitting only .178 against Adam.
In the District Tournament, Plummer is 3-0 and has given up just eight hits in 69 at bats — a batting average of .116 against him. He has struck out 25 and walked four, allowing just two earned runs in picking up three complete-game wins and a save in 22 and 2/3 innings on the mound.
“This was a great game pitched by Adam,” said Bellwood-Antis head coach Steve Conlon, who wins a district title in his first year as head coach of the Blue Devils. “All year we have run him out there in the big games and every game he comes up big. I might be biased, but he is by far the best pitcher I’ve seen in this area. He is just dominant every time out.”
Bellwood-Antis added three more runs in the later innings to deny Bishop McCort any chance to gain the momentum.
Ryan Myers singled to center with one out in the sixth, stole second base and scored on Alley’s second single of the ballgame.
In the top of the seventh, The Blue Devils spiked the final two nails into the Crushers’ coffin. Plummer slammed a double to deep centerfield. Weiand singled to score Plummer and came around to score on a wild pitch.
“The biggest bat I felt that worked for us today was Chris Alley,” said Conlon. “That’s a sophomore who came up big in a championship game with a couple hits. Shawn Weiand also hit the ball extremely well today, knocking in two runs for us. Overall, some of our guys didn’t get great cuts, but others stepped up, especially the bottom of the order. Chris Alley was huge for us in the number nine spot.”
Ryan Myers, Ricky Shannon, Nate Carlson and Shawn Weiand were also members of the Bellwood-Antis basketball team which won the 2003 District 6 Class AA Championship.
District VI-A Championship Game
Veterans Memorial Field, Altoona
Bellwood-Antis 6 Bishop McCort 1
BELLWOOD-ANTIS – Shanon, cf, 3-1-0; Stere, ss, 4-1-1; Plummer, p, 4-1-2; Weiand, c, 3-1-2; Miller, lf, 4-0-0; Carlson, 1b, 3-0-0; Myers, rf, 3-1-1; Brisbin, 2b, 3-0-0; Alley, 3b, 3-1-2. TOTALS 30-6-8,
BISHOP MCCORT – Stetz, ss, 3-0-1; Petrosky, 3b, 3-0-0; Delsignore, 2b, 3-0-1; Gable, c, 0-0-0; Tomkoski, c, 0-0-0; Becker, dh, 3-0-0; Wagner, rf-1b, 3-0-0; Stenger, 1b, 2-0-0; Deihl, cr-rf, 0-1-0; Herbick, lf, 3-0-0; Swetz, p, 2-0-1; C. Leech, p, 0-0-0; A. Leech, cf, 2-0-0. TOTALS 24-1-3.
Bellwood-Antis 003 001 2 6-8-0.
Bishop McCort 001 000 0 1-3-1.
2B: Plummer 1.
RBI: Weiand 2, Alley 1, Stere 1, Miller 1.
SO: Plummer 12, Swetz 2.
BB: Plummer 1, Swetz 1.
WP: Plummer LP: Swetz.