The Pennsylvania College of Technology baseball team was shut out in postseason playoff action but its players earned numerous accolades for their regular-season performance.
Two-and-out. That was the postseason story for Penn College as its season ended Tuesday in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Small College World Series. A little more than a week earlier it was eliminated in similar fashion during the Penn State University Athletic Conference playoffs.
The Wildcats, seeded ninth in the USCAA event, dropped their opener on Monday, 8-4, to No. 8 Selma (Ala.) University in rain-delayed action at Robin Roberts Stadium on the campus of Robert Morris University in Springfield, Ill. On Tuesday, they were eliminated by No. 4 Clark State (Ohio) Community College, 9-5, to close out a 23-14 season.
For Penn College on Monday, Garrett Hornung had two hits, including a triple, and scored a run while Zachary Smith drove in two runs. Starting pitcher Harrison Myers took the loss. The team was plagued by four errors.
In their final game on Tuesday, the Wildcats led 5-3 in the fifth inning but gave up six runs in the bottom half of the frame and couldn't recover. Cody Buterbaugh ended the game with two hits. Pitcher Josh Longsderff, who earlier in the season tossed the first perfect game ever for Penn College, took the loss.
Earlier in the week, senior Skylar Gingrich and sophomore Cody Buterbaugh were awarded USCAA honors - Gingrich as a First Team All-American and Buterbaugh as an Academic All-American for maintaining a 3.5 or higher cumulative grade point average.
Also, Gingrich was named the PSUAC Player of the Year and seven Wildcats were named to the All-Conference Team. Gingrich ended the season leading the conference in batting average (.443), runs batted in (51) and home runs (eight). Also cited on the first team, in addition to Gingrich, were senior Hornung; sophomore Brian Santangelo and freshman Zachary Buterbaugh. Earning second team honors were senior Jared Johnson, junior Myers and sophomore Longsderff.
A second baseman, Hornung led the conference in on-base percentage (.533) and walks (32) and pitcher Santangelo led the conference in ERA (1.71). In his rookie season, center fielder Buterbaugh batted an impressive .384. Right fielder Johnson batted .386 with three triples and pitcher Myers racked up four wins with 30 strikeouts and pitcher Longsderff had a solid year recording 28 strikeouts.
"It (playoffs) didn't go the way we planned it to. They were games that I felt like we could have and should have won. It's hard to explain the way our postseason went, but that's just part of the game," coach Chris Howard said. "What happened to us in the postseason in no way should put a damper on the type of year we had. It was a fantastic year. When you win, there's a reason that you win and it's because of good players and we certainly had a lot of them," Howard added.
Final Overall record: 23-14
Final PSUAC record: 14-6
Monday, May 7 vs. No. 8 Selma, Ala., University in USCAA Small College World Series at Springfield, Ill., L, 8-4
Tuesday, May 8 vs. No. 4 Clark State, Ohio, Community College in USCAA Small College World Series, L, 9-5
May 17-20 U.S. Intercollegiate Archery Championships at Harrisonburg, Va.