Back Mountain wins District 31 major softball crown

By John Erzar - [email protected]
The Back Mountain Little League Major softball team takes a victory lap around the field after defeating Greater Wyoming Area 12-0 in four innings to win the District 31 championship in Dallas on Saturday. - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Back Mountain starter Victoria Spaciano struck out 10 and threw a one-hit shutout against Greater Wyoming Area on Saturday. - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Back Mountain’s Abby Cruz is safe at second base as the ball squirts out of the glove of Greater Wyoming Area shortstop Ellie Parra in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game Saturday. - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Back Mountain pitcher Victoria Spaciano, right, and third baseman Abby Cruz run to the dugout after a successful defensive inning against Greater Wyoming Area in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game in Dallas on Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader - - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Back Mountain’s Jordan Porasky scores under the tag of Greater Wyoming Area pitcher Jillian Graham covering the plate in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game Saturday. - - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

DALLAS — Saturday’s first inning was three up, three down.

Not something seen very often by Back Mountain during the District 31 Little League Major Softball tournament.

The second inning was more like it.

Back Mountain sent 12 batters to the plate, banged out five hits and scored seven runs on the way to a 12-0 victory over Greater Wyoming Area in the championship game. The game ended after four innings via the 10-run rule.

Back Mountain advances to the Section 5 tournament and will play District 32 champion Tripp Park at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Old Forge Little League field. District 16 Pittston Area will play the District 17 champion at 5:30 p.m. in the double-elimination tournament.

Back Mountain finished the tournament at 5-0 and outscored its opponents 64-3 in the process.

“They’ve been sectional champions on both sides for like the past three years,” Back Mountain manager George Vitanovec said.

The uncharacteristic start changed when Victoria Spaciano opened the second inning with a triple to deep left field. She scored when Abby Beyer grounded out to shortstop. The hitting, though, continued as Abby Cruz and Chelcie Strobel sandwiched singles around a pair of walks.

A bit later, Allison Vitanovec hit a two-run single to center. Spaciano got to the plate for a second time in the inning and hit an RBI double to right.

Just like that, Back Mountain was up 7-0.

Five more runs crossed the plate in the fourth. Vitanovec and Spaciano opened the frame with singles. A wild pitch, a couple errors and an RBI single by Amber Zimmerman brought the runs across the plate.

“We’re solid one through nine,” George Vitanovec said. “Our three hitter, my daughter Allison, then Spaciano is our five hitter and then Beyer five and Cruz six. They are automatic every time. It’s tough to pitch around the kids because if you try to pitch around Victoria, the three and five hitters produce all the time.”

Obscured a bit because of the offense was the pitching from Spaciano. She retired the first nine batters she faced — seven via strikeout and the other two on grounders — to bring a perfect game into the fourth.

GWA’s Ella Rau broke up the no-hitter by lining a single to right to start the fourth. Spaciano then finished off the game with three more strikeouts.

“Phenomenal as always,” George Vitanovec said of his pitcher. “I don’t think she’s walked anybody all tournament. She moved the ball all over the plate — high, low, inside, out.”

District 31 Major Softball Championship

Back Mountain 12, Greater Wyoming Area 0 (4 inn.)

Back Mtn.`AB`R`H`BI

Hunt c`3`1`0`0

Hudak ss`3`0`0`0

Vitanovec 1b`3`2`2`2

Spaciano p`3`2`3`1

Beyer 2b`2`1`0`1

Cruz 3b`3`2`1`0

Porasky cf`1`1`0`0

Zimmerman cf`1`1`1`1

Palka rf`0`1`0`0

Hazletine rf`1`0`0`0

Strobel lf`1`1`1`1

Smith lf`1`0`0`0

Totals`22`12`8`7

GWA`AB`R`H`BI

Rau 2b`2`0`1`0

Slusser rf`2`0`0`0

Janeski c`2`0`0`0

Leo lf`2`0`0`0

Graham p`1`0`0`0

Parra ss`1`0`0`0

Vacula 3b`1`0`0`0

Mercavitch 1b`1`0`0`0

Potter cf`1`0`0`0

Totals`13`0`1`0

2B — Spaciano. 3B — Spaciano.

Back Mountain`070`5 — 12

GWA`000`0 — 0

Back Mtn.`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Spaciano W`4.0`1`0`0`0`10

GWA`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Graham L`4.0`8`12`9`6`4

The Back Mountain Little League Major softball team takes a victory lap around the field after defeating Greater Wyoming Area 12-0 in four innings to win the District 31 championship in Dallas on Saturday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_TTL070118LL-GWA-BM_1.jpgThe Back Mountain Little League Major softball team takes a victory lap around the field after defeating Greater Wyoming Area 12-0 in four innings to win the District 31 championship in Dallas on Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

Back Mountain starter Victoria Spaciano struck out 10 and threw a one-hit shutout against Greater Wyoming Area on Saturday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_TTL070118LL-GWA-BM_2.jpgBack Mountain starter Victoria Spaciano struck out 10 and threw a one-hit shutout against Greater Wyoming Area on Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

Back Mountain’s Abby Cruz is safe at second base as the ball squirts out of the glove of Greater Wyoming Area shortstop Ellie Parra in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game Saturday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_TTL070118LL-GWA-BM_3.jpgBack Mountain’s Abby Cruz is safe at second base as the ball squirts out of the glove of Greater Wyoming Area shortstop Ellie Parra in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

Back Mountain pitcher Victoria Spaciano, right, and third baseman Abby Cruz run to the dugout after a successful defensive inning against Greater Wyoming Area in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game in Dallas on Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_TTL070118LL-GWA-BM_5.jpgBack Mountain pitcher Victoria Spaciano, right, and third baseman Abby Cruz run to the dugout after a successful defensive inning against Greater Wyoming Area in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game in Dallas on Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times LeaderBill Tarutis | For Times Leader

Back Mountain’s Jordan Porasky scores under the tag of Greater Wyoming Area pitcher Jillian Graham covering the plate in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game Saturday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_TTL070118LL-GWA-BM_4.jpgBack Mountain’s Jordan Porasky scores under the tag of Greater Wyoming Area pitcher Jillian Graham covering the plate in the District 31 Little League Major softball championship game Saturday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Back Mountain wins D31 major softball crown

By John Erzar

[email protected]

Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar

Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar