Warwick ousts Mountville, will face Solanco next for trip to final
BY DAVE BYRNE
The defending LNP Tournament Midget-Midget champions are back in the title game.
Entering the tournament as the No. 4 seed, the Manheim Township Blue Streaks have slugged their way through the quaifying series and not missed a beat in the in the Final Four.
Exploding for nine runs in the top of the fifth inning, the Streaks (19-3) punched their title ticket with a 12-3 victory over Solanco White on Tuesday night at Mount Joy’s Kunkle Field.
White (23-8-2) will meet the No. 2-seeded Warwick Phillies on Wednesday at 6 p.m. in an elimination game. The Phillies stayed alive with a 17-0 victory over the Mountville Indians, earlier Tuesday.
Turning point: Entering his fifth inning of work in a 3-3 tie, the first pitcher of the tournament to go that far, White’s Michael May got the first out of the inning. He issued a walk to Nick Kurtz, May’s first walk of the game, and Kurtz stole second and third.
Winning pitcher Colin Fitzgerald singled to right field, scoring Kurtz with the go-ahead, and eventual game-winning, run. The Streaks would go on to send 14 batters to the plate, chasing May and releiver Kyle Stively while scoring nine runs.
Stars of the game: Fitzgerald was 3 for 4 with a pair of RBIs. Also driving in two was Kurtz (2 for 3), who scored three runs.
Key statistic: Solanco had four hits in the first two innings including May’s two-run home run and Stively’s RBI single, its last of the game. Township threw leather at the southern enders as Fitzgerald and releiver Luke Wenger recorded 11 ground ball outs, four from third baseman Michael Heckman.
Up next: With their spot in Friday’s championship game secured, the Blue Streaks await the winner of Wednesday’s contest.
WARWICK 17, MOUNTVILLE 0
The Warwick Phillies flirted with perfection Tuesday evening. The Mountville Indians were uncharacteristically imperfect.
For the second night in succession, Mountville pitchers experienced difficulties finding the strike zone. When they did, their offerings found safe haven within — and outside of — the confines of Mount Joy’s Kunkle Field.
Melding 12 hits with 11 walks, the Phillies (43-5) eliminated the Indians from the LNP Midget-Midget Tournament in a game shortened to four innings by the mercy rule.
Three Warwick pitchers came within an out of combining for a perfect game, however short. Gavin Constein stroked a two-out single up the middle off Matthew Williams, the Phillies’ third hurler, to break the spell. Williams then retired Tanner Pobursky to end the game.
Turning point: The Phillies batted around, plus 4, in the top of the first inning, scoring eight runs. Evan Rohrbach’s two-run homer and a three-run shot by Matthew Seibert fueled the outburst.
Stars of the game: Rohrbach drilled a pair of two-run home runs in two official at-bats and pitched an inning and a third in a starting role, striking out three. His evening was limited by the tournament’s pitch-count regulations, but he picked up the win. Seibert was 3 for 3 with four runs scored and five RBIs. Zach Shertzer, 2 for 3, scored a run and knocked in two.
Key statistic: The Indians (26-15-1) gave up 37 runs in eight tournament innings.
Up next: On Wednesday night, the Phillies will face Solanco in an elimination game. First pitch is set for 6 p.m. The winner will face Township on Friday.