Mountville to defend title at LNP Tournament

By Dave Bryne
LNP Correspondent

Is it the LNP Tournament, or the Mountville Indians Invitational? The 60th installment of the tournament gets underway Thursday with a Midget-Midget doubleheader at Mount Joy’s Kunkle Field.

And once again, the big question will be if anyone can unseat the Mountville Indians. Coach Bob Sauders has guided Mountville to four straight championships. He fields another powerful team this year; the Indians went 33-13 in the regular season.

But they didn’t win the Penn Manor League championship this season — the title went to the Norlanco Redbirds, who are staring at the Indians from the other side of the bracket.

The Redbirds (29-6) open Thursday at 8 p.m. against Maytown Marietta Blue. In the opener, Mount Joy Blue faces SWS Cardinals at 6.

On Friday, Mountville faces Manheim Township Black at 6 p.m. and the Warwick Phillies and Hempfield Black square off at 8 back at Kunkle.

The semifinals will be held Monday, July 18 and the championship follows on Tuesday the 19th.

Here’s a look at each team:

MOUNTVILLE INDIANS
COACH:
Bob Sauders
LEAGUE: Penn Manor. Section 1A Co-champion, League Runnerup.
RECORD: 33-13
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 7; going for 4th straight
KEY PLAYERS: p/ss Alex Manacher, 2b Zach Brubaker, p/inf Mark Feiler and c Steve Feister all return from last year’s champions.

MOUNT JOY BLUE
COACH: Ron Wagner
LEAGUE: Susquehanna. A Division Champion.
RECORD: 26-9
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 0.
KEY PLAYERS: p Jason Sauder; p/1b/ss Kevin Newcomer; 2b Trent Albert; c Taylor Nauman.

NORLANCO REDBIRDS
COACH: Mike Lowrie
LEAGUE: Penn Manor. Section 1A Co-champion, League Champion.
RECORD: 29-6
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: First year in tournament.
KEY PLAYERS: c Cameron Gallagher (14 HR, 61 RBI); p Madison Zimmerman (8-0, 1.38 ERA); ss Brok Martin (.450, 40 stolen bases).

WARWICK PHILLIES
COACH: Darrell Snyder
LEAGUE: Susquehanna. A Division Runnerup, League Champion.
RECORD: 15-12
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 2 (last was in 1992).
KEY PLAYERS: p/cf Cody Snyder (.393); ss Derek Adams (.368); p/3b Andy Wooley (.294); 3b/of Kris Cullen (.295); 1b/p Jordan Donmoyer (.325).

HEMPFIELD BLACK
COACH: Dan Brookhart
LEAGUE: Penn Manor. Section 1A 3rd place.
RECORD: 17-10
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 0.
KEY PLAYERS: Brookhart says, “We have 13 kids on the team and everybody has done something to contribute to a win during the course of the year.”

MARIETTA/MAYTOWN BLUE
COACH: Bill Jones
LEAGUE: Susquehanna. A Division 3rd place.
RECORD: 10-17
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 0.
KEY PLAYERS: p/ss Austin Musser (.490); c Matthew Kolp (.350); cf Kyle Kreider; 2b Jeffrey Dixon; 1b Colby Rodenhauser.

SWS CARDINALS
COACH: Kevin Beckley
LEAGUE: Penn Manor. Section 1A 4th place. (Defeated Susquehanna “B” Champion Mt. Joy Red 7-2 in NET play-in game.)
RECORD: 19-11
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 1 (last was in 1999, but Willow St. Cardinals won 5 NET titles before merger with Strasburg.)
KEY PLAYERS: p/1b/of Tyler Beckley (.366); ss/p Matthew Carta (.425); c Michael Lawhead (.338); of/p Jonathon Pugliese (.433); ut Alex Ferretti (.302).

MANHEIM TWP. BLACK
COACH: Bob Coleman
LEAGUE: Penn Manor. Section 1A 5th place. (Defeated Susquehanna “A” League runnerup Manheim VFW Maroon 2-1 in NET play-in game.)
RECORD: 8-16
NET CHAMPIONSHIPS WON: 1 (in 2001, but MT White Sox won in 1986.)
KEY PLAYERS: p/ss Robert Lehman (.426); p/ss Adam Yunginger (.375); inf Billy Schmidt (.341).