Millersville knocks off Kutztown in opening game of regional on walk-off
WEST LAWN, Pa. -- It's becoming routine for Millersville. For the third time in four postseason games, Millersville won in walk-off fashion. This time it was Kurt Seiders putting the ball in play and getting Dan Stoltzfus home for a 3-2 win against Kutztown in the opening game of the NCAA Atlantic Regional.
Millersville (37-14) took an early 2-0 lead but saw Kutztown (30-20) tie the game on Kyle Stoudt's bases loaded single in the seventh off of the generally rock-steady Adam Zipko. Zipko exacted some revenge, though, by working scoreless eighth and ninth innings and eventually getting the win to improve to 8-0 on the season.
With the score knotted in the bottom of the ninth, Stoltzfus led off with a double over the left fielder's head and then cruised into third base when Matt Swarmer (2-2) uncorked a wild pitch. With a 2-2 count, Seiders slapped an outside pitch to the right side of a drawn-in infield. The second baseman could not field the ball cleanly and the error allowed Stoltzfus to cross home plate with the game-winning run.
The Marauders improved to 11-3 in one-run games and the win pushed them into second round to face the loser of Mercyhurst and Seton Hill on Friday at 3:30 p.m. Millersville is also now 5-0 in the first game of NCAA regionals.
Stoltzfus went 2-for-4 with a run and a RBI. Dan Johnson, Zach Stone and Tyler Orris each had two hits. Stoltzfus put the Marauders on the board in the first inning with a single that scored Chas McCormick. The Marauder lead extended in the fourth when Mark Stuckey ripped a double in the left-center field gap and David Summerfield scored from first base. Stuckey made his postseason debut and played in his first game since April 21. He also made his first start of the season in center fielder.
Tad Barton, a Reading native, made the start on a field where he pitched many high school and American Legion Baseball games. After allowing just one run on three hits in eight innings against Kutztown in the PSAC Championship, Barton took a non-decision despite leaving the game after 6.1 innings with no runs allowed. The two runners on base that scored were credited to Barton. Still, he allowed only five hits in his effort. Matt Binder struck out one batter and Zipko allowed two hits and struck out four in 2.1 innings.