Les(ter) is more
Josh Lester’s RBI Single in Extra Frame Gives
Southeast Champs Win
By Mark Rogoff
Staten Island All-Stars were walk-off winners against New Jersey in
the Mid-Atlantic Region championship game. On Saturday in their Pool
A opener, they were on the losing end of a sudden-death game,
dropping a 3-2 decision to the Columbus (Ga.) All-Stars in seven
Georgia's Josh Lester provided the game-winning hit, smacking a one-out single in the seventh
that scored Ryan Lang from
second and ending the game at Lamade Stadium after a two-hour,
six-minute rain delay.
Lester came to the plate after an intentional walk to
slugger Kyle Carter, and he made Mid-Island Little League pay.
“I haven’t had many, but I’ve had a couple,” said Lester. “When they
pitch around Kyle it usually pays, and that time it paid.”
Lang started the home half of the seventh with a lead-off walk, and
went to second on Matthew Hollis’s sacrifice bunt.
“I don’t know about (the players), but I’m emotionally and
physically drained and I didn’t do anything but stand up there and
coach,” said Georgia manager Morris.
Staten Island got the lead-off man on in the top of the seventh with
Adam Skjeie’s double off Carter, who came on in relief of J.T.
Phillips. But Chris Benedetto struck out, Joe Calabrese grounded out
and Chris Goetz struck out to end the inning.
“It was a heated game with two very good teams playing and very good
pitching going,” said Morris.
Phillips allowed two runs and four hits in six innings of work.
Staten Island’s Chris Goetz, meanwhile, surrendered a pair of runs
on six hits in six innings.
Some heads up baserunning by Staten Island’s Joe Calabrese helped
tie the score at 2-2 in the fifth. With one out and Calabrese on
first, Goetz hit a slow roller toward short that third baseman
Patrick Stallings cut off, fielded cleanly, but had a tough time
transferring to his throwing hand.
Goetz reached first base safely without a throw, and with no one
covering third, the speedy Calabrese advanced to third. Calabrese
then came around to score on Frank Smith fielder’s choice grounder
to second baseman Matthew Hollis.
Cody Walker opened the scoring with a solo homer in the bottom of
the first, driving a 1-2 offering from Goetz over the wall in
right-center field. Then in the third, Walker drove in Lang from
second with a sharp single to left.
“The first two pitches I missed completely,” Walker said of his
at-bat that resulted in a homer. “I got myself back together, and he
threw a curveball outside that was up. I just went with the pitch.”
Three straight hits by the seven-through-nine hitters produced New
York’s first run. Matt Davis started it with a single to left-center
field. After special pinch runner Doug Goetz advanced to second on a
passed ball, Adam Skjeie’s single up the middle pushed Goetz to
third. That set the table for Benedetto’s RBI to right.
© 2006, Little League Baseball
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