Apr. 3—”It’s a beautiful day for a ballgame. Let’s play two.”
That was the famous quote from Hall of Famer Ernie Banks, the late, great shortstop of the Chicago Cubs.
His words are fitting for two WPIAL baseball teams Saturday afternoon.
Two days after the snow was falling and the wind chill was in the low 20s, temperatures are expected in the 60s for a Section 2-5A doubleheader between Plum and Armstrong.
This is the first-ever section clash on the diamond between these two schools after Plum dropped from Class 6A to 5A for the first time in baseball.
Both teams just missed the playoffs in 2019, finishing in fifth place in their respective classifications.
This will be the season opener for the Mustangs while the River Hawks are off to a 2-1 start.
The games will be played at Armstrong at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Nine years after they met in the WPIAL Class AA baseball championship game, neighbors Ellwood City and Riverside will meet in a nonsection game Saturday.
The Wolverines knocked off the defending champion Panthers in the 2012 finals, 9-7, for the school’s fifth and most recent district diamond crown.
The rivals will meet at Lincoln HS in Ellwood City at 1 p.m.
Ellwood City is in Section 1-3A this year while Riverside plays in Section 2-2A.
Three more to mention
With this being Easter weekend, most teams have time off from the various playing fields.
There are two WPIAL softball and three other baseball games on the district schedule on Saturday, all with 12 p.m. starts.
In softball, Blackhawk visits Shenango and Mt. Pleasant travels to Penn-Trafford in nonsection contests.
In baseball, Laurel Highlands hosts West Mifflin in a Section 3-4A opener (on HSSN) while Hempfield is at Pine-Richland in a Class 6A nonsection tilt and Connellsville visits Penn-Trafford in a Class 5A nonsection clash.