A single one-run loss is the only blemish on the Riverside baseball season.
The timing of that loss, however, is enough to prevent the Vikings from playing for a state championship.
Schuylkill Haven used a brilliant relief pitching performance by Mason Ulsh to pull out an 8-7 victory over Riverside in Monday’s Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association state Class 2A baseball semifinal at the Mountain Post American Legion Field.
Riverside erased an early three-run deficit.
Ulsh, who came on in the second inning, held Riverside to one run over the final five innings, none over the last three.
Zach Day also had a strong relief effort for Riverside and was the hard-luck loser.
Day allowed only one run on three hits while striking out seven in 4 1/3 innings, but that run proved to be the game-winner. He also had a triple, double, single and three RBI.
The start of the game was delayed an hour by rain.
Once started, the game featured a wild first two innings.
Riverside scored in the top of the first, but trailed, 4-1, after one.
The Vikings moved in front, 6-3, in the second only to fall behind by a run in the bottom of the inning.
Riverside rallied again to tie the game in the top of the fourth when Michael Rickert doubled with two out and Day followed with an RBI triple.
Ulsh’s two-out double in the bottom of the fifth broke the tie and delivered the winning run.
Cole Canfield led the Schuylkill Haven offense, going 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI.
Day matched that 3-for-4, three-RBI effort.
Riverside also got two hits, two runs and an RBI each from Rickert and Jason Janesko.
The Vikings entered the game with 23 straight wins, including a perfect Lackawanna League Division 3 season and the District 2 Class 2A title.