So often the big game never lives up to the hype preceding it. The title game for this year’s co-ed softball league would have definitely been worthy of the hype, if there had been any hype. The once beaten (last week by the Natural Disasters) Blue Mountain Stone Quarry Workers took on the Paddy Whackers, a team they had beaten twice during the regular season, Monday night in Bohn Park with championship bragging rights on the line. The Whackers drew first blood with a lone run in the home half of the first inning. The Quarry Workers knotted the score with a run of their own in the top of the second. The Whackers upped the
ante with a couple more runs in the bottom half of the inning to lead three to one after two. In the third BMS again evened the slate with a deuce in their half of the inning. With the score tied at three all, it looked like the Whackers were going to blow open the game when they rocked the Quarry Workers for five runs in the bottom of the third. But Blue Mountain was not deterred; they patiently scored two runs in the fourth inning and three more in the fifth to tie the game for the third time at eight to eight. The Whackers were relentless. They scratched out two more runs in the bottom of the inning to go by ten to eight with only a few minutes left before the seven o’clock end time. But back came BMS! Showing their championship mettle, the Quarry Workers exploded for three runs in the top of the sixth inning to get their first lead (11 to 10) of the night. All they needed were three quick outs and the ball game would be over. Rally, meet rally. The Paddy Whackers would not be denied. They needed one run, and they got one run. Tie game; extra innings! Both defenses tightened their belts, and neither team scored in the first extra frame. In the top of the eighth, the BMS batters tried to recapture the lead with some mammoth moon shots that barely stayed in the park and were caught. The Paddy Whackers employed a different strategy. Needing only one run to end it, Austin “Flies Like The Wind” Boone hit a wicked grounder right a the first base woman, who handled it cleanly. Somehow Boone beat her to the bag for an infield single. His speed on the base paths turned a made-to-order double play ball to short into a fielders choice at first. They say you can’t coach speed, and a line drive to center brought the speedy Boone to the plate without even a throw. Ballgame, season, championship. The Paddy Whackers won the game twelve to eleven.
The seven o’clock game (which actually got started about 7:15 p.m.) was between the Natural Disasters and Fast Signs for third place honors. This one started with a bang, a boom, and a pow! The Disasters buried the Sign Makers with a landslide of run in the opening frame. When the dust settled, the score was five to nothing in favor of ND. Right back at you was the response from the Signs. They matched that five in bottom of the inning, and tacked on another two runs in the second to go up seven to five after two complete. Taking no prisoners, Fast Signs held the Disaster scoreless, and painted their opponents for six more scores in the last half of the third inning to go up thirteen to five. The Disasters got a couple of those runs back in the fourth, but gave them right back in the bottom of the inning. Fast Signs scored two more “insurance” runs in the fifth inning, and walked away with a 17 to 7 victory, and third place in the league standings.
The third game battle for between McHeaters and Shake N’ Bake for fifth place was a little closer. SNB came out swinging in the bottom of the first inning and set a torrid pace. After holding McHeaters scoreless the Bakers knocked in four runs. McHeaters closed the gap to four to two with a couple of runs in the second. Shake N’ Bake cooked up three runs in their half of the second inning, and sported a seven to two lead. In the third inning it looked as if things might get out of hand for McHeaters, as they gave up six runs to the Bakers. But, turn around is fair play, and McHeaters scorched the Bakers for six of their own in their next at bat.
With the score standing at 13 to 8 in favor of the Bakers, McHeaters desperately needed to silence the SNB bats. It was not to be. Shake N’ Bake continued to apply the heat, and burned their foes with two more runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Now a major rally was needed. Seven runs and the game would be tied. And rally they did! Unfortunately it was only a minor rally; four runs. When the umpire called “time,” McHeaters found themselves on the short end of a 15 to 12 outcome.
The final game of the night (and season) pitted last year’s champs, the Stonebridge Farmers (who were bitten hard this year by the injury bug) against the Chamber Rockers. This contest was for seventh place bragging rights, if one can brag about coming in seventh in a nine-team league. But, with not much on the line, it was a spirited match nonetheless. Stonebridge came up big in their first at bat, rocking the Chamber for three runs. The Chamber came up bigger with five of their own. The Farmers continued the offensive onslaught with five runs of their own in the top of the second inning, but were subjected to a bumper crop of runs by the Rockers in bottom half of the frame. Looking at an eight to five deficit, the Chamber hitched up their collective pants, and crossed the plate nine times in the second inning! With twenty-two (14 to 8 in favor of the Rockers) runs scored in two innings, everyone on both teams was a little winded. Neither team scored in the third inning. The Farmers began the slow process of a comeback with a pair of runs in the fourth inning. They continued the process with two more in the fifth. But the rally died with a pop fly into the glove of Chamber third baseman Taka “The Blade” Sueyoshi. The final score of the final game was 14 to 12 in favor of the Chamber.
If the “fall-ball” schedule doesn’t go (two more teams are needed), then we’ll see you all next year folks. Let’s get ready for ski season.