2010 AAABA Altoona Regional
After falling to newcomer Miami in extra innings on Saturday, the Philadelphia Bandits responded with 4 consecutive wins including a triple-header on Monday to win the Altoona Regional. The Bandits belted out 37 runs over 5 games. As winners of the regional, the Bandits qualified for the 2010 national tournament in Johnstown.
Altoona (as regional host) and Philadelphia (as regional championship) advance to Johnstown for the national tournament
|4||Elk County||Mifflin County Stars||0||2||2||4||20|
|1||Jul 31||Sat||12:00 pm||Miami (1-0)||3||(10)||1||Philadelphia (0-1)|
|2||Jul 31||Sat||4:00 pm||Altoona (1-0)||9||3||Elk County (0-1)|
|3||Aug 1||Sun||12:00 pm||Philadelphia (1-1)||11||(7)||1||Elk County (0-2)|
|4||Aug 1||Sun||4:00 pm||Miami (2-0)||8||5||Altoona (1-1)|
|5||Aug 2||Mon||10:00 am||Philadelphia (2-1)||12||0||Altoona (1-2)|
|6||Aug 2||Mon||1:00 pm||Philadelphia (3-1)||9||4||Miami (2-1)|
|7||Aug 2||Mon||4:00 pm||Philadelphia (4-1)||4||2||Miami (2-2)|
Altoona Regional : Game 1 - Miami vs Philadelphia (81 photos)
Altoona Regional : Game 2 - Altoona vs Elk County (133 photos)
Altoona Regional : Game 3 - Philadelphia vs Elk County (91 photos)
Altoona Regional : Game 4 - Miami vs Altoona (109 photos)
Philadelphia 11 - Elk County 1 (7 innings)
|Elk County (Mifflin County Stars)||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||X||X||1||5||2|
In the first elimination game of the regional, the Philadelphia Bandits mercy-ruled the Mifflin County Stars 11-1 in 7 innings. The game was out of hand quickly as the Bandits scored three runs in each of the first two innings.
"Those first two innings were hard to overcome," said Stars manager Danny Knepp. "We only had 10 hits in 2 games and I think that two guys--Clinton and Kemmer--had most of them. We haven’t hit the ball well all season, so we knew that if our pitching and defense didn’t hold up that we would be in trouble."
Philadelphia had four consecutive hits in the first, as Moyer singled, Ferdinand and Seiz doubled, and Olesnki singled. Moyer also stole second, Ferdinand stole third, and Seiz advanced to third on a pass ball. The Stars got out of the inning with a double play, but only after giving up 3 runs.
Bandits starting pitcher Nathan Jendrzeweski struck out 4 in the first two innings and retired the side in order in the third. By that time, the Bandits had built a 6-run lead after sending 8 men to bat in the 2nd. Brendan Norton and Dillion Moyer both doubled, with Moyer's hit scoring Norton and Sean Coyle.
Dillion Moyer, son of Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer, had 3 hits and a walk, plus 2 stolen bases and 2 RBIs in the game.
"He’s a coach’s dream," said Bandits manager Mike Gossner. "This is Moyer’s first summer with us and he is a pleasure to work with. He’s quiet, he understands the game, and he’s always focused." Moyer played this past summer with Florida's IMG Academy and was drafted 22nd by the Minnesota Twins. He will begin his college career this year at UC-Irvine.
Philadelphia added 2 more runs in the 4th courtesy of Ryan Seiz's deep hit to right field. Seiz was thrown out trying to reach third base. In the 6th, the Bandits attempted a double steal with Moyer and Coyle. Catcher Tyler Umbenhour's throw was deflected out of play, however, allowing both runners to advance in for runs. However, relief pitcher Wade Fagan responded with three strike outs, providing an emphatic end to the inning.
Unfortunately for the Stars, Fagan's pitching success did not energize the offense. Elk County ended the shutout when Nicholas Pupo singled in Kasey Clinton from 2nd, but were then retired in order in the 7th.
With two outs in the 7th, Matthew Maher hit a double for the Bandits and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Sean Coyle then hit a hard shot to third baseman Brian Billett who could not handle the ball, allowing the mercy-rule run to score.
Philadelphia will play Altoona tomorrow at 10:00am in another elimination game. Elk County ends their tournament run 0-2.
Miami 8 - Altoona 5
|Florida Bombers of Miami||0||0||0||0||0||6||0||1||1||8||13||5|
|Altoona Johnston Realty||0||0||1||1||0||3||0||0||0||5||7||4|
The Florida Bombers once again had to come from behind to win, but used a big inning and solid relief pitching to win a tough game against host Altoona.
Altoona came out with plenty of energy and opened the scoring in the third. Sean Dixon singled and was moved over by Michael Marcinko and Neil Schroth. Kyle Mann then reached first when third baseman Tyler Filliban's throw was low, allowing Dixon to score. Miami's starting pitcher ended the inning with a strike out of Nick Eversole, stranding two.
Johnston Realty increased their lead in the 4th, this time on an error from second baseman Kenneth Brown. With the count 0-2, Marcinko took a very close pitch for his first ball, then ripped a shot to second that Brown had trouble playing. Miami would end the day with 5 errors, one more than Altoona.
The Bombers' offense was late-arriving in Saturday's opener, and it took until the sixth inning for Florida to score against Altoona, but manager Emilio Fernandez felt that the two situations were different.
"Today's at-bats were better than yesterday. We were swinging better, but the results were the same. We hit a couple balls really well." One of those well-hit balls was Rony Rodriguez's 350-foot shot to deep center field with 2 outs and 2 men on in the 5th, but it was caught at the fence by centerfield Jake Weibley.
In the sixth, Nolan Thomas singled, Tyler Filliban was walked, and substitute Anthony Angulo reached on a bunt single to load the bases. Ryan Perez flew out to right field to score Thomas. Sean Hurley was walked to load the bases again, and Jorge "Chino" Vega reached on a fielder's choice which scored a second run. Brown was walked and Josh Gonzaga reached on an error by the shortstop. Finally, Rony Rodriguez hit a 2-run scoring single to give the Bombers a 6-2 lead. Rodriguez finished the day with 2 hits and 3 RBIs. "Rony is a veteran guy," said Fernandez. "He's been in the program since 2007 and you expect a veteran like him to come up big."
"The 6th inning was a killer. [Starter] Christian Muth pitched a great game, but he just ran out of steam," said Altoona manager Mel Curtis.
Altoona responded quickly, scoring three times in the bottom of the inning. Andy Glass led off with a double. The next batter, Jake Weibley, reached on a throwing error by Filliban and the ball went out of play. The umpires ruled that Glass would advance two bases on the overthrow, scoring a run, which was received with confusion and protest by the Miami bench.
Will Solomon was brought in to pitch for Miami, and let up a run-scoring sacrifice bunt to Marcinko. Neil Schroth followed with a double and Kyle Mann put forth a strong effort during his at bat, but was eventually forced into a ground out. Reliever Adam Sargent then came out and struck out Joe Pillot on three pitches, to end the inning.
"Sargent: that's our guy," said manager Fernandez. "Bringing your closer in that early is not typical, but I felt momentum was switching and we needed outs." Sargent finished the game with 4 strikeouts and no hits allowed.
Miami added insurance to their lead with runs in the 8th and 9th. Altoona was sent down in order in the ninth.
"We learned a lot about the team today. They battled back," said manager Curtis. "They realized they can play against high quality teams." Johnston Realty will start Tyler Ferguson on the mound tomorrow against Philadelphia.
Miami 3 - Philadelphia 1 (10 innings)
Miami won their debut game over the Bandits in a close defensive battle. Starters Ben Lively (Miami) and Kyle Mullen (Philadelphia) each allowed only 1 run.
|Florida Bombers of Miami||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||2||3||9||0|
Nicholas Ferdinand singled in Brendan Norton from second in the 3rd inning to open the scoring for Philadelphia. The Bandits collected 5 hits through the first 4 innings, but were held hitless for the rest of the game. Despite the lack of offense, there were two Bandits on base in the bottom of the 9th courtesy of 2 walks. But reliever Adam Sargent recorded the third out against the first batter he faced to send the game into extra innings.
The Florida Bombers had a sluggish start and did not record a hit until the third inning. "We haven't played a meaningful game in 3 weeks," said Miami manager Emilio Fernandez, and the long bus ride from Florida to Pennsylvania probably didn't help much either. Miami then only had one hit in each of the 4th, 5th, and 7th innings. Finally, in the 8th, lead off hitter Jesse Pintado reached base with a hard shot past the short stop. The next batter, Tyler Filliben was brushed back with a pitch, but sent the next one deep into center field for an RBI double. In the tenth, Filliben hit another long shot to center field for another RBI double, scoring Rony Rodriguez. Mike Fernland then sent a shot off the third baseman's glove, scoring Filliben for a two run lead.
Philadelphia manager Mike Gossner was impressed with Miami's debut. "They're a fundamentally sound ball club. Their pitcher settled down in the 4th or 5th inning and adjusted well."
The tenth ended in interesting fashion. Sargent forced Tommy Stolzer to ground out, struck out Steven Shelinsky, and had Nick Ferdinand down 0-2 but walked him. For the final batter, Ryan Seiz, Sargent recorded another strike out, but the third strike was dropped. After yelling from both dugouts, Seiz took off for first and catcher Anthony Angulo threw to first, but the throw was way off, causing first baseman Rony Rodriguez to step off the base. In a play much closer than it needed to be, Rodriguez was able to recover the bad throw and record the final out before Seiz made it to first.
"We usually only play 7 innings, but playing 9 today let us get things done," said Miami manager Emilio Fernandez. "We're used to coming from behind. We came from behind in our 5 playoff games in Georgia. You can score a run any time, you just have to stay with it."
|Ryan Seiz had the Bandits' first hit||Nicholas Ferdinand hits in Philly's run||Philadelphia's James Yezzo|
|Ben Lively struck out 9||Ryan Perez makes a great catch at first||Miami's Nolan Thomas|
Altoona 9 - Elk County 3
Host Altoona Johnston Realty also needed a comeback in a close game, but eventually erupted for 4 runs in the 7th to defeat Elk County 9-3.
|Altoona Johnston Realty||1||0||0||0||2||0||4||0||2||9||10||6|
|Elk County (Mifflin County Stars)||0||0||0||2||1||0||0||0||0||3||5||2|
Altoona wasted no time in their opening game, as Neil Schroth bunted and stole second to get into scoring position, and when then brought home by John Shaffer. Altoona's started Andy Lytle kept Elk County hitless through the first three innings while recording 4 strike outs.
The Stars finally got the offense going in the fourth. Casey Zimmerman reached base on Lytle's low throw to first. After Nicholas Pupo struck out, Jon Kemmer sent a towering shot to center field. Zimmerman tried to score from first based but was thrown out at home plate. While that run didn't score, it did inject the Stars with some energy. Kemmer moved to 3rd on a wild pitch and Kasey Clinton brought him home with a single up the middle. Nicholas Beamenderfer reached on an error by second baseman Schroth, and David Bender was walked to load the bases. Tyler Umbenhour was then walked, brining Clinton home with the go-ahead run. But Lytle got Brian Billett to ground out to Schroth to end the inning with the bases still loaded.
Altoona quickly responded in the 5th. Joe Pillot, Jake Weibley, and Michael Marcinko all reached on 3 consecutive hits, the latter two being bunts. After Stars starter Samuel Gardner struck out Neil Schroth, he walked John Shaffer to tie the game. Kyle Mann's sacrifice to centerfield put Altoona back on top.
In the bottom of the inning, Lytle's two walks and a single by Pupo loaded the bases, prompting a pitching change from manager Mel Curtis much sooner than expected.
"Coach told me yesterday that I'd probably be in relief," said relief pitcher Sean Dixon. "Anytime Andy Lytle pitches you expect him to go deep, so I didn't expect to go in in the fifth."
"Sean Dixon has pitched well for us all year," said Curtis. "He doesn't get rattled. He thrives on situations like this." Dixon walked the first batter he faced, tying the game, but then record two strike outs to end the inning. He would strike out 5 more in the final 4 innings. Elk County left the bases loaded for the second inning in a row.
While the Stars had trouble offensively, Johnston Realty struggled defensively, recording 6 errors in the game. Manager Curtis said his team had been playing well in recent games, but that the "bottom just fell off today on throwing errors."
In the seventh, Altoona opened up the close game with a 4-run outburst. Jake Weibley was walked to lead off the inning and then stole second base. Michael Marcinko hustled to beat out a throw from the short stop, putting men at the corners. With new pitcher Jon Kemmer on the mound, catcher Tyler Umbenhour tried to pick off Weibley at third. The ball got past third baseman Billett allowing a run to score.
"We had the big play," said Elk County manager Daniel Knepp. "He was dead at third, but the throw got away and they scored. If we get him out, it's a different ball game." Following that play, Schroth was walked and John Shaffer hit a sacrifice fly to centerfield to score Marcinko. Schroth stole both second and third base and scored on a wild pitch. Designated hitter Nick Eversole put a shot a few inches over the reach of second baseman Beamenderfer which brought in Kyle Mann, who had reached on a walk. The Stars finished the inning with 2 strikeouts from Kemmer, but the damage had been done.
Altoona added 2 more runs in the top of the 9th as Josh Gallagher and Joe Pillot hit back-to-back shots to center field, Gallagher for a double and Pillot for a single. Dixon closed out the 9th with a strike out and one hit-batsman.
Despite the loss, the Elk County team was still in good spirits, which doesn't surprise manager Knepp: "Our guys have tremendous character."
For Curtis and Johnston Realty know that tomorrow's game against Miami will be a tough game, but feel confident about their chances. "[Christian] Muth will be on the mound. He's the pitcher who knocked Baltimore out last year. When he's on, he's tough to beat."
Sunday's schedule has day one losers Philadelphia and Elk County playing at noon in an elimination game, with day one winners Miami and Altoona playing at 4:00pm. Both games will again be at Stewart Athletic Field on the campus of Penn State Altoona.
|Neil Schroth records the out against Tyler Umberhour||Nicholas Pupo catches a fly ball in center||Sean Dixon registered the win|
|Mason Hershey applies the tag to Casey Zimmerman||Starting pitcher Samuel Gardner||Altoona's Kyle Mann|
All regional tournament games are to be played at the Penn State-Altoona campus (weather permitting). Click on the Google link below to map the field.
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