Bryce Molinaro hit one of three Hazleton Area home runs and drove in four runs Wednesday when the unbeaten Cougars defeated Tunkhannock, 10-0, in six innings to capture the Wyoming Valley Conference Division 1 championship.
The win improved the Cougars to 12-0 in the WVC and 18-0 overall. It was the fifth straight shutout and 12th straight game in which Hazleton Area gave up one run or none.
Brett Antolick worked the first five innings of a combined three-hitter. He walked two and struck out eight.
Luke Russo pitched a hitless sixth inning, striking out one.
Hazleton Area then scored two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to end the game on the 10-run rule with two outs.
Jatnk Diaz and Ryan Verbonitz hit the other home runs and each drove in three runs. Diaz had two hits and also scored three times.
Russo went 3-for-4 and scored twice.
Damarco Maglio allowed just one earned run in the first six innings and Zach Walsh tripled in the game’s last two runs as Division 2 leader North Pocono knocked Abington Heights out of a share of the Division 1 lead with a 6-2 victory in the Lackawanna League crossover game.
Maglio gave up two runs total on four hits and three walks while striking out 10.
Walsh’s triple capped a three-run bottom of the fifth for the 6-2 lead. Earlier in the game, he stole two bases and scored.
Matt Show had two hits and an RBI for the Comets.
Luke Janiszewski was 3-for-3 with a double while Zane Janiszewski struck out 12 in 6 2/3 innings when Western Wayne defeated Mid Valley, 8-5, in a Lackawanna Division 3 game.
Nate Dudeck threw a four-hit shutout while striking out seven and walking just one as Holy Redeemer remained alive in the WVC Division 2 race with a 3-0 victory over Wyoming Seminary.
Ethan Elmes had a double, single and run scored to lead the offense.
Mid Valley only needed three innings to win on the 15-run rule, but that was long enough for leadoff hitter Maranda Runco to fill all four categories needed to hit for the cycle.
Runco drove in five runs and scored two as the Spartanettes clinched the Lackawanna League Division 3 title with a 17-1 romp at Western Wayne.
Mid Valley (14-1 overall) improved to 12-0 in the division with two games remaining. Every other team in the division has at least three losses.
Runco continued an incredible season at the plate by going 4-for-4 with a single, double, triple and home run.
Through 15 games, Runco has driven in 37 runs while scoring 28 and is batting .556 (35-for-63). She has homered in seven straight games, giving her 14 on the season to go along with seven doubles and her first triple of the season as part of the cycle.
Mid Valley scored nine times in the top of the second for a 12-1 lead and added five more runs in the third.
There were many other offensive contributors.
Lindsey Jason was 2-for-2 with a double and two runs scored. Courtney Rebar doubled and drove in three runs. Chiara Zavislak had two hits, two runs and two RBI. Zoe Zelinski scored twice and drove in two runs. Kayle Terranella had two hits and scored twice.
Runco took a day off from pitching where she is 13-1 with a 1.23 earned run average, two no-hitters and 124 strikeouts in 85 innings.
Emma Kobylanski struck out five while walking just one in a two-hitter.
The top three teams in WVC Division 1 all won.
Tunkhannock held first place with a 4-0 shutout of Dallas; second-place Pittston Area blanked Crestwood, 6-0; and Berwick moved into a third-place tie by defeating Wyoming Valley West, 14-5.
Paige Marabell went 3-for-4 with a homer for Tunkhannock while Kaya Hannon tossed a two-hit shutout and had two hits.
Hannon walked one and struck out nine.
Nicole Howell also homered, singled and drove in two runs.
Gianna Adams threw a four-hit shutout, Sage Weidlich had three hits and Ava Callahan had three RBI.
Adams walked three and struck out eight.
McKenzie Waltman went 4-for-4 with two doubles, a home run, five RBI and four runs scored to lead Berwick.
Kendra Jordan scored nine goals, including the 100th of her career, and North Pocono defeated Tunkhannock, 13-12, in overtime in a WVC game.