WINGATE — With his very first pitch, Dylan Womer made his intentions clear. The senior popped the mitt with a crisp, clean strike down the middle — a harbinger of things to come.
In fact, in Bald Eagle Area’s five-inning, 14-1 stomping of Philipsburg-Osceola, Womer retired 12 of the required 15 via strikeout.
The plan was simple.
“Attack the zone,” Womer said after the game. “Fastballs pretty much. I didn’t have to use too much off speed today. … Warming up I felt pretty good. Throwing pretty hard. Definitely hitting my spots.”
The right-hander gave up just three hits in the game, two of which came in the first inning when it seemed the Mounties were to be reckoned with.
However, the Eagles’ offense quickly quashed thoughts of an upset.
BEA bats exploded for seven doubles in the game, including four in a five-run first that answered P-O’s lone run in the inning’s top half.
With part of his face bandaged, Bryce Greene went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles, scored three runs and knocked in two more.
Logan Reese also had a pair of two-baggers to go with two RBIs.
That potent hitting combined with a steady diet of heat from Womer made it another long day for the Mounties (0-2).
“We’re struggling early,” said P-O coach Doug Sankey. “We don’t have a whole lot of experience and it shows.”
After a 14-4 lashing in five innings against Bellefonte on Thursday, P-O has been outscored 28-5 in its last ten frames.
Matt Carpin went 2-for-2 and knocked in the Mounties lone run. Taylor Golembeski singled up the middle in the first, but that was all the offense P-O could muster.
“The last two games we’ve gotten behind early,” Sankey said. “We’re not throwing strikes, we’re putting guys on base and when we do throw strikes we (make errors).”
Tanner Lamb, the P-O starter, struggled to find the zone early. When he finally located it in the second, his defense began the inning with three consecutive errors.
Instead of escaping, Lamb gave up a double to Dyke with the bases chock full of Eagles. Cole Long (2-for-4, 2 RBIs) and Ben Verbitskey (1-for-3, 3 RBIs) also helped propel the BEA attack.
That was more than enough for Womer.
His dominance peaked in the third when he threw eight strikes in a row. The ninth was a bender that buckled the batter’s knees and elicited a twitch from the umpire.
Womer’s teammates marched in unison toward the dugout expecting a called-third strike. It didn’t come. No matter. It came on the next pitch.
“That’s what we know Dylan is capable of,” said BEA coach Jim Gardner. “We look for him to give us a solid start every time he steps out there and I really believe he’s going to be very difficult to beat.”
Gardner won’t be far from the truth if the Eagles’ give Womer similar run support.
While warming up with his twin brother before the game, Bryce Greene took a ball in the cheek after a poor throw from Bryan and a bad hop in the dirt.
He played with a heavy bandage over the laceration and said he would likely head for stitches after the game.
It didn’t seem to hurt him at the plate.
“I felt good actually,” Bryce said through the swollen right side of his mouth. “Saw the ball right out of the pitchers hand. Felt good.”
For BEA the next step is a Saturday matchup with DuBois.
With an impressive start to the season, the Eagles don’t seem to be shying from expectations. They have aspirations of their own.
“We feel real good,” said Gardner. “We feel there’s a tremendous amount of potential on this team and we have our sights set high. We need to go one game at a time and just keep getting better everyday we step on the ball field.”
For P-O it’s time to regroup.
The Mounties travel to Huntingdon on Monday.
“We’re young and we have some talent,” Sankey said. “We’re just going to get better. We just have to keep working. We have to keep grinding, we just have to keep grinding.”