NEPA Sports Nation

Barrouk gem sends Dallas to semis

By Nate Johns, NEPA Sports Nation Student Journalist

READING – Sam Barrouk’s pitching once again shut down a Dallas playoff opponent.

The Mountaineers blanked Hanover, 6-0, for their second postseason shutout in the last three games, both of which came behind the work of Barrouk as the starter.

The victory over the District 3 runner-up at Muhlenberg High School sent Dallas (17-7) into the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association state Class 4A semifinals Monday against District 12 champion Archbishop Wood (18-6) at 4:30 p.m. at DeSales University in Center Valley. The Mountaineers also made the semifinals six years ago on the way to the state championship.

For first year coach Mike Viglone, this run is “surreal and special for the kids” and is part of a relationship of respect and development between coach and team.

“The kids bought into the program,” according to Viglone, and the respect goes both ways.

“He’s just been a great guy, helping us with everything,” junior shortstop Zach Paczewski said. “He brings a lot of energy to the table and we love it.”

The pitching led the way for the Mountaineers with Barrouk working 6 2/3 innings. He allowed three hits and two walks while hitting two batters and striking out nine.

Dusty Shaver came in to get the final out against the only batter he faced.

Chase Roberts struck out five in 5 2/3 innings while taking the loss for the Nighthawks.

Paczewski drove in two Mountaineers runs while Healey was 1-for-1 with two walks, a stolen base and an RBI.

Barrouk picked up right where he left off against Honesdale in the District 2 championship game, striking out two of the first three batters. Then, after a lead-off triple by Gavin Adamski, Paczewski brought him in on a fielder’s choice to start the scoring.

“It was a big game, we knew we had to get on them early, get ahead, and get the momentum on our side” Paczewski said.

The offense didn’t stop there. The Mountaineers got back-to-back, two-out singles from Dylan Geskey and Jude Nocito, and a hit batter loaded the bases. Geskey and Nocito scored on two wild pitches to make it 3-0 Dallas after the first.

Hanover got one of its hits in the second, with a one-out single from Nadir Harris. He was stranded on first after two outs, including a hard-hit flyball that right fielder Joe Peters tracked down and caught. The first three batters reached to start the second for the Mountaineers, and an RBI single to center for Paczewski brought the score to 4-0.

The third found Barrouk in his first jam but he was able to get out of it. After a two-out single and then an error put runners on the corners, a strikeout of Hanover’s Roberts ended the top half of the inning. Dallas continued to score thanks to a wild pitch with two runners in scoring position.

Barrouk had a five-run lead with which to work, and he just continued carving up batters with two strikeouts in the fourth. Dallas scored the final run of the game when three straight batters reached with two outs, and Healey smoked a ball to center making it 6-0.

The Nighthawks attempted a rally in the fifth, starting with a lead-off single for Gavin Trish, which was followed up with a hit batter. However, a base-running mistake ended the inning when a fly ball was hit hard to right, but Peters made the catch. The runner on first was already sliding into second, and Peters threw a rocket to Healey at first, turning a double play and ending the inning. Roberts had his first 1-2-3 inning to stop the scoring streak of 11 straight innings for the Mountaineers. 

Pitchers controlled the sixth. Barrouk retired the side in order, and Hanover only gave up a one out walk that was stranded at second.

The Nighthawks drew back-to-back, two-out walks. Shaver came in and J.J. Rischawy caught the final out in left to send Dallas back to the semifinals.

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