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Baseball: Knoch comes alive in WPIAL playoffs

Written by Mike White on .

Mike White profiles the Knoch baseball team.

"It wasn't the way it was supposed to play out for the Knoch baseball team. Lose one-third of the regular-season games, finish second in the section and get a No. 10 seed for the playoffs.

This wasn't what anyone could have predicted from a defending WPIAL and state championship team that had two undefeated pitchers returning from a year ago. But the team with all the great expectations at the start of the season is suddenly close to reaching some of them.

While Knoch stumbled at times in the regular season, there is no knocking Knoch in the postseason. The WPIAL baseball semifinals are Monday and Knoch is present again – for the second consecutive season and only the second time in school history. The Knights face Blackhawk (7 p.m.) at the Burkett Complex in Robinson.

It's not that Knoch has done an about-face in the postseason, but this was a team that was only 12-6 in the regular season and gave up four runs a game. In the 2015 regular season, Knoch allowed only two runs a game in the regular season. The Knights were ranked No. 1 in WPIAL Class AAA at the start of this season."

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Baseball: Knoch looks like its old self in first-round win

Written by Keith Barnes on .

Maybe all the Knights needed was to get the playoffs started to end all of their regular-season problems.

On Monday, Knoch began defense of its WPIAL and PIAA Class AAA titles with a 3-1 victory over Yough in the first round of the WPIAL playoffs.

Pitcher Alex Stobert threw a two-hitter to help Knoch move on.

It was a much different scenario for Knoch (13-6), which has already lost three times as many games as it did all of last season and finished second to Mars in its section.

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Baseball: Knoch hopes to shake struggles and make playoff run

Written by Keith Barnes on .

Knoch was supposed to have an impregnable defense this season with the best starting rotation in Class AAA.

Now, as the regular season comes to a close, the Knights have a few chinks in their armor and are not nearly as invincible as they were when they won the WPIAL and PIAA Class AAA titles last season.

Not only has Knoch (12-6, 9-3) already lost three times as many games as it did last season, the team has lost two of its last three, including a 15-8 loss to Mars that gave the Planets the Section 5 title. The 15 runs were the most they'd given up since a 15-6 loss to Pine-Richland on April 1, 2014.

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Track: Knoch's Geist breaks another record

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Knoch's Jordan Geist refused to slow down at the Butler Invitational last Friday

The junior broke his own meet record in the discus with a throw of 182 feet, 10 inches. Geist also had high marks in the shot put. He won the event with a throw of 69-7 1/2.

Greensburg Salem's Lawson Monta was the closest to Geist in both events with a distance of 55-6 1/2 in the shot put and 162-1 in the discus.

Geist will move on to face top competition at the Penn Relays where he will defend his title in the shot put. Last year he threw 67-1 to claim top honors.

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Baseball: Despite struggles, Knoch holds on to Section 5-AAA lead

Written by Keith Barnes on .

After having one of the most dominant seasons for a WPIAL Class AAA team in recent years, Knoch has come down to join the rest of the mortals this year.

Despite having one of the most dominant 1-2 punches on the mound in seniors Cole Shinsky and Alex Stobert, the Knights went into their game Monday at Valley with only a half-game lead over Mars (6-4, 5-2) in Section 5 and already have twice as many losses (7-4, 6-2), both in section and overall, that they did a year ago when they won both the WPIAL and PIAA titles.

Last week, they were handed their worst section loss in two years when Hampton sent them to a 7-1 defeat. In its four losses, Knoch has been outscored, 27-6. The Knights only gave up 52 runs in 25 games, including the playoffs, in 2015.