Last updated: July 17. 2013 10:26PM - 2566 Views
By - jerzar@timesleader.com - (570) 991-6394

Back Mountain American's Michael Anderson gives up ball after a big first inning by North Pocono batters in Wednesday night's Section 5 Little League Major Baseball final.
Back Mountain American's Michael Anderson gives up ball after a big first inning by North Pocono batters in Wednesday night's Section 5 Little League Major Baseball final.
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ARCHBALD — Two batters into Wednesday’s game and Back Mountain American had a one-run lead. That run, scored on Ethan Zawatski’ fifth homer of the tournament, was a distance memory by the time the first inning ended.

North Pocono answered that lone run with nine in the bottom of the first and went on to eliminate American with a 13-3 victory in the Section 5 Little League Major Baseball championship game at the Archbald Little League.

The game ended in the bottom of the fourth due to the 10-run rule. Tom Rable was able to wiggle a grounder through American’s drawn-in infield, scoring the 13th run with one out and ending District 31 champion American’s season.

“They’re all 12 and played their last Little League game,” American manager Jeff Doggett said. “But I’ll tell you what, I’d rather lose with them than win with a lot of other teams. I’m very proud of them. I’d play (North Pocono) here tomorrow if I had the opportunity. But our time is over.”

The tournament ended like it started for American with a loss to D17 champ North Pocono. North Pocono won that game 11-9 and American won Tuesday 10-9 to force Wednesday’s game.

Both games — and Tuesday’s in particular — showed North Pocono could score runs in bunches. It had a six-run fifth in Tuesday’s loss, something that boded well coming into the decisive game.

“We told that to the kids when we sat down here in the outfield last night,” North Pocono manager Joe Walsh said. “Some of them were down and I said ‘You finished the game hitting well. You came up one run short. If we come out like this tomorrow, we’ll win the game.’ And, boy, did they come out, but I didn’t think they would come out hitting like that.”

Zawatski, who finished the tournament hitting .667 with 10 RBI, smoked a liner over the left-field fence for a 1-0 lead in the first. It was his fourth homer against North Pocono pitching.

North Pocono responded with a pair of three-run homers — by Nick Rinaldi and Daniel Walsh — in the first inning. It pounded out seven first-inning hits to take a 9-1 lead.

“That’s what happens when you play a good team when you give them a lot of outs and leave the ball over the middle of the plate,” Doggett said. “That’s what good teams do.”

Zawatski, American’s third pitcher of the first inning, stopped the damage and kept North Pocono off the board in the second and third innings. American managed to get a couple runs back on a solo homer by Michael Luksic in the third and when Dalton Simpson scored on an error in the fourth.

The chance to peck away at the deficit ended in the bottom of the fourth as Rinaldi added a two-run homer and consecutive RBI singles ended the game.

“Today wasn’t our day,” Doggett said. “I’m proud of these guys. We’ve been together a long time.”

North Pocono will now head out to Bradford where it will play in the state tournament with its first game in pool play at 4 p.m. Sunday.

Back Mtn. Amer.`AB`R`H`BI`2B`3B`HR

Michael Luksic cf`2`1`1`1`0`0`1

Ethan Zawatski 3b`2`1`1`1`0`0`1

Michael Anderson p`2`0`0`0`0`0`0

Michael Doggett c`2`0`0`0`0`0`0

Dalton Simpson 1b`2`1`2`0`0`0`0

Michael Collins ss`2`0`0`0`0`0`0

Mark Roginski lf`1`0`0`0`0`0`0

Mason Gattuso rf`1`0`0`0`0`0`0

Derek Answini 2b`1`0`0`0`0`0`0

John Betzko lf`1`0`0`0`0`0`0

Darren Kerdesky rf`1`0`0`0`0`0`0


North Pocono`AB`R`H`BI`2B`3B`HR

Daniel Walsh 2b`3`2`2`3`1`0`1

Shane Lamparter cf`3`1`1`1`0`0`0

Nate McClain 1b`1`1`0`0`0`0`0

Brenden Willsch 1b`1`0`0`0`0`0`0

Ryan Deom ss`3`2`2`1`0`0`0

Nick Rinaldi lf`3`2`2`5`0`0`2

Jake Mastillo 3b`2`2`2`0`0`0`0

Steve McNulty p`3`2`2`0`1`0`0

Tom Ruddy c`2`0`0`0`0`0`0

Christian Hanerfeld lf`1`0`1`1`0`0`0

Tom Rable rf`2`1`1`1`0`0`0

Brenton Dial rf`0`0`0`0`0`0`0


Back Mtn. American`101`1 — 3

North Pocono`900`4 — 13

Back Mtn. Amer.`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Anderson (L)`0.0`5`6`5`1`0



North Pocono`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

McNulty (W)`4.0`4`3`2`0`2

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