After trailing by five runs heading into the bottom half of the third inning to Abington Heights, Paupack’s junior varsity baseball team rallied for a come-from-behind victory, 7-5, on Wednesday afternoon.
“These kids never gave up and always believe they can come back no matter what the score is,” said Paupack manager John Yatsonsky.
Coming into the contest. Abington had the best record in the division with only three losses. Now, the Bucks, Scranton, and the Comets are in a three-way tie for the lead with one game remaining on the regular season slate.
“We hold our destiny in our hands, and that is how we want it,” said Yatsonsky.
Abington jumped out to the early advantage, plating four runs in the second inning, and one more in the top of the third, before the Bucks clawed their way back into the game.
The comeback bid got started in the bottom of the third frame when Joey Budnovitch hit a single, and Alec Babyak cracked a double to put runners on second and third.
Mike Henry, batting cleanup, brought in Budnovitch on a fielder’s choice and Babyak scored to cut the deficit to 5-2.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Bucks’ John Pillar reached on an error, then took second on a passed ball.
Luke Camuso then worked a walk, and Pavel Sprague reached safely for his second time in the game. Justin O’Dell then took a ball-four base-hit to force in Paupack’s third run of the game.
With the score holding steady at 5-3 heading into the sixth, the Bucks’ O’Dell led off with a walk, and Budnovitch reached on a error.
Henry then stepped into the batter’s box and ripped an RBI single up the middle of the infield to make it 5-4.
Danny Skibber then hit a sacrifice fly to deep center to score the game-tying run.
With bases loaded, Marc Petersen was called in to pinch hit and delivered, bringing in two more runs on a hard-hit ball to the Comets’ shortstop who mishandled the play to make it 7-5 in favor of the home team.
John Pillar came in for relief in the seventh frame, and struck out two Abington batters on his way to earning the save.
“The team played an all-around good defensive game and battled back the entire time,” said Yatsonsky.
The Bucks are now 9-4 in division play, and 12-4 overall.
“With one game remaining, we have the chance to get to double digit wins for the first time in quite a few years,” said Yatsonsky.
The Bucks last regular season game of the year is set for Monday afternoon at Paupack.