The Loyalsock 10-11 baseball team jumped out to a big first-inning lead and cruised to the state title on Thursday, beating West Point 14-7 at Pittston Township.
The five-run first inning helped starting pitcher Evan Nagy cruise as he scattered four hits and struck out nine.
"The kids have played scrappy all tournament, and to play with a lead after the first inning gave them the confidence to win a state title," Loyalsock coach Eric Nagy said.
Evan Nagy helped Loyalsock gain the early momentum, connecting with a home run in the team's five-run first. Nagy finished 2 for 3 with two home runs.
Loyalsock was held scoreless in the second, but Connor Watkins gave the District 12 champs an 8-0 lead with a three-run home run in the third inning.
West Point scored seven runs over the final three innings, but Loyalsock maintained a comfortable distance.
Loyalsock answered West Point's two-run fourth and five-run fifth with three runs in the bottom of each inning.
Zach Haefner hit a two-run single in the fifth to spark the offense and extend Loyalsock's lead.
"It was truly a team effort and we have received contributions from every player on the roster," Nagy said. "It's hard to believe we are state champions. I think it still has to set in."
The game ended on a double play when Alex Schluter made a catch in right field and doubled a runner off of first base. The play set off a huge celebration.
West Point 000 250- 7 6 1
Loyalsock 503 33X-14 12 0
Matt Wicker, Andrew Roseberg (1), Bryce Butler (5) and Reed Hipps. Evan Nagy, Connor Watkins (5), Haydn Watkins (5) and Zach Haefner.
Top West Point hitters: Wicker 3-4. Top Loyalsock hitters: Connor Watkins 2-3, HR; Nagy 2-3, 2 HRs; Hayden Watkins 2-4, 2B.