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Smithtown Wins Battle of Stampedes in Playoff Semi

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The Smithtown STAMPEDE once again was pitted against Farmingville's LI Stampede in the continuation of the Memorial day Wood Bat Bash Tournament.  It was a tough fight for both teams but Smithtown prevailed despite LIS' starting pitcher's strong effort.  Josh (3.1 IP, 3 R, 4 H, 2 BB, 2 SO) was on the mound for Smithtown and fired away for the first 2 innings as LIS jumped ahead 2 - 0 in the 1st and added an unearned runin the 4th. 

Paul came on to relieve Josh in the 4th after 2 batters.  Paul got the final 2 outs to close the top of the inning, down 3 - 0.  Rob (2-3, R)  & Paul (1-2, BB, R) banged out Smithtown's only 2 hits through 3 innings.  The 4th would be a different story. Nick the Stick singled to the SS hole.  Rob followed, serving a single just inside the LF line.  With one out, Ricky's bouncer to 3B had him out at 1B and saw Nick evade the tag at 3B on the return throw by smartly establishing a deep basepath leaving second.   Josh then drove in 2 with a rope to right-center to make it 3 - 2 LIS after 4 innings.

However, a momentum shift seemed to take place after the LIS shortstop led off the 6th with a single to right.  He was promptly picked off of first and erased in a rundown.  With 2 outs, The Smithtown shortstop came up with the play of the day.  A sharp 2-hopper in the hole turned into an all-out dive and rollover snare.  A perfect throw from the edge of the LF grass to Double A's big mitt at 1B retired the side.

Smithtown threatened in the 6th on a pop-fly single by Jason that fell in RF and walk by The Stick.  LIS shut it down with a key strikeout.   Smithtown would tie it in the 7th as they fought on.  Josh singled to RF and Salvatore worked a 1 out walk.  Up stepped Saturday's hero... Hit Man Anthony.  A 4 for 6 Saturday with a game winning walk off hit had his hot bat primed.  Hit Man cracked a drive to leftcenter that fell, allowing Josh to score, despite an all-out diving effort by the LIS CF.  3 apiece after 7 innings of "regulation" play.

Paul (4.2 IP), nailed down a 1-2-3 top of the 8th and then led off the bottom of the frame.  He reached on a walk after working the count full.  Jason put down a textbook SAC toward 1B to advance Paul to second.  Nick the Stick then dug in with one thing on his mind.  After going to 0 - 2 in the count, he blasted a long drive down the RF line for the walk-off with Paul racing around third and scoring to seal the victory.   The Stick was mobbed by his teammates who now had one thought on their minds... tournament championship next.


  


 

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