Randolph Little League Playoff Highlights and Heros; 'Majors' World Series Match-up Set


RANDOLPH, NJ- The Randolph Little League World Series is all set as the last two rounds of the playoffs were decided earlier this week. 

Cardinals 9 Mets 1: The Cardinals were able to hold the high scoring Mets offense to 1 run with solid pitching performances from Andre Schiavone, Justin Townsend, Brian Eames, & Michael Ippolito.   Niko Flores drove in Joe Mancuso for the Mets only run in the first inning.  Jimmy Pepe led all Cardinals batters with a single & a double driving in 3 runs.  

A’s 9 Rockies 4: The A’s finished off the regular season with an 11-1 record with that only loss coming at the hands of the Rockies.   Early on, things were not looking good for the A’s as Tyler Rusher shutdown their dangerous lineup. However in the third, 8 straight batters reached base, highlighted by a two run homer from the A’s clean-up man, Jake Iantosca.  Ryan Polesuk pitched an impressive five innings allowing only five hits and one run, while contributing offensively with 3 RBI’s of his own.  The Rockies did not go down without a fight.  Trailing 9-1 in the top of the 6th inning, Harry Baxter knocked in a pair with a bases clearing double to the gap to fire up his team, and soon the bases were loaded again.  However, the A’s young closer Eric Recchia never lost his cool, and struck out the final batter to end the game.

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Tigers 8 Astros 5:  Both teams came out hot in this one scoring 2 runs each in the first inning.   Jason Tamres of the Tigers knocked in the first two runs with a line drive up the middle.  The Astros answered on back to back doubles by Dylan Glincman and JP Byrne.  The Tigers regained control with a five-run second inning, with consecutive hits by Nick Short, Jason Roskam, Matt Darakjy and Matt Kratochvil.  Darakjy and Kratochvil pitched flawlessly for the Tigers, and were matched by several strong innings on the mound by the Astros' Byrne.  Jason Roskam took the mound in the last inning, and faced the heart of the Astros order, efectively shutting them down to earn the save. 

Semi Finals Action:

Cardinals 5 Braves 2: The Cardinals advanced into the Championship Game with a 5-2 win over the Braves.  Brian Eames led the Cardinals with an outstanding pitching performance while Tyler Berg hit a homer for his squad.  Ryan Ross led all Brave batters by going 2 for 2 with a triple & home run. 

Tigers 6 A’s 4: The Tigers and A's played an epic game sure to be remembered as a Randolph Little League classic Wednesday night under the lights at Freedom Park.  With a large crowd watching on, the two teams slugged it out for nine innings.   The A's opened the scoring on aggressive base running by Will Flanagan.  The Tigers responded with 3 runs in the second on hits by Dylan Haun and Jason Tamres.  Andrew Novak laid down a perfect bunt that resulted in 2 runs on a broken play.  The A's stormed back on hits by Ryan Polesuk, Cole Carrol, and Paul Recchia.  Ray McNamara then laid down a sacrifice bunt to give the A's the lead 4-3.

The Tigers were down to their last at-bats in the top of the 6th trailing by one run.  They loaded the bases with no outs when Matt Kratochvil hit a deep ball to left field allowing Jason Roskam to tag up and score the game tying run.  The A's avoided further damage when they got the next batter to line out and pulled off a timely double play. 

The teams exchanged zeros behind great pitching from Kratochvil ( Tigers ) and Recchia ( A's ) until the Tigers finally broke through in the top of the ninth, when Mark Darakjy walked.  A booming triple by Kratochvil drove him in and then a line drive by Haun drove in Kratochil.  Starting off the ninth, the first A's batter ripped a line drive down the third base line that looked like trouble until Tigers third baseman Lucas Girardi stopped the threat with a beautiful catch.  The Tigers were able to get the net two outs and end the game at 6-4, sending them to the Championship game. 

The World Series will be decided Saturday night 7 o’clock at Freedom Park in Randolph.       

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