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Emmaus falls in EPC semi

It is always hard to beat the same team three times in the same season. The Emmaus and Parkland High School baseball teams met for the third time during the 2023 campaign last week, the first meeting in the postseason. The Trojans got the better of the Green Hornets twice during the regular season and then made it three straight with an 11-5 victory last Monday, May 15, in the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference semifinals at DeSales University.

It was the first loss in the EPC tournament for Emmaus in over two years, having won the conference each of the last two years. The fourth-seeded Green Hornets defeated fifth-seeded Pocono Mountain East 6-4 the previous Thursday in the quarterfinal round.

Top-seeded Parkland, which beat Emmaus 11-5 and 3-2 during the regular season, advanced to the championship game where it got shutout by Liberty 10-0 in six innings, as the Hurricanes captured the EPC title.

The Green Hornets needed to start off fast and gather some positive momentum, and they did just that. Cohen Schadler ripped an run-scoring triple in the top of the second inning to put his team out in front 1-0 early on. The Trojans, however, answered immediately and in a big way, bringing home seven runs in the bottom-half of the second, highlighted by an inside-the-park grand slam by Bo Barthol, Parkland’s pitcher. Emmaus also helped the Trojans with four errors defensively in the inning as they took a commanding 7-1 advantage after two frames. The Green Hornets committed six errors total in the game.

Emmaus scored two runs in the top of the third inning on an RBI single by Zach McEllroy and an RBI sacrifice fly by Emmit Budick to cut their deficit to 7-3. Barthol, though, was at it again with a two-run single in the bottom of the fourth to cap a three-run, bottom of the fourth as Parkland went up 10-4. The Green Hornets tacked on a run in the fifth.

Schadler went 2-for-3 with three RBIs. McEllroy also had a pair of hits and Colin Wilson scored two runs.

Emmaus is 14-8 overall and received the five seed in this week’s District 11 6A tournament and will take on the fourth seed, Northampton (13-8), in the quarterfinal round Wednesday at Northampton High School. The two teams split their two meetings during the season with the Kids winning the first matchup 13-4 on April 5, and Emmaus winning the second game 10-3 on April 25.

The winner will take on conference champ, Liberty in the semifinals on Sunday.

PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Ryan Latchford delivers a pitch during the Hornets' league playoff game against Parkland.