5/23/98 Cranford @Home (UCT Final Game)

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E LOB
Cranford 0 1 0 0 3 0 0 4 9 5 10
Summit 0 1 3 1 0 0 5 4 6 3

There is no joy in Cranford. For the second year in a row Cranford has lost only one game - both times to Summit in the Union County Tournamant. If you weren't there you have no idea of the tension, and excitement that was present. It was a great night for Summit baseball. Summit won the toss and was the home team so Cranford batted 1st. After an out and a walk Cranford's star Baran singled to left and went to second when the ball was mishandled. With runners at 2nd and 3rd Starter, Jared Chellevold, struck out two of Cranford's biggest hitters (Weingart & Meyer) to get out of trouble. Fred Luberto led off for Summit with a towering fly to left center that looked like it might clear the fence, but Cranford's center fielder made a bare handed catch at the fence to rob Luberto of at least a triple. In the 2nd with one out Cranford lofted a routine fly to center, but Luberto lost the ball in the twilight and field lights and it became a triple. The run scored when the next ground ball was booted. A walk put two on with one out. Chellevold got the next two hitters to ground out and escaped with only a single run. Kyle Bennett tied the game in the 2nd when he opened with a triple and came home on a wild pitch. Summit added 3 more runs on 4 Cranford errors and a two-out single by Bennett that drove in two key runs. Chellevold pitched two great innings (3rd & 4th) as he got the six outs on only 19 pitches. In Summit's 4th Joe Mormak led off with a double and then stole 3rd base. After a strikeout, Coach Dietz called for a suicide squeeze. Mormak came barreling home and Josh Lipsey laid down a perfect bunt to allow Mormak to score what was eventually the winning run. In the Cranford 5th a leadoff single resulted in a runner at third base when the ball got past Luberto. The next batter lofted a fly to left, but Duane Dates slipped and fell. The result, a double. One run scored, but that would have happened even if the ball had been caught. Another single turned into a triple when the ball got past Dates. Now the score was 5-3 and tension was mounting. A 3rd run scored on a ground out. The next batter singled but was cut down stealing on a great throw by Mormak and a terrific tag laid on by Ben Wheeless. Wheeless got spiked in the leg in the process. Now there were two outs. A single and a walk raised the tension again, but Chellevold got the Cranford pitcher, Feeley, to ground out and end the inning with Summit still up by one.
For the start of the 6th inning Jason Flores came in to relieve Chellevold. An opening strikeout was followed by a single and a walk. That brought up Cranford's two biggest hitters (Baran and Weingart) with runners at 1st and 2nd. Flores rose to the occasion striking out Baran and getting Weingart to hit a feeble ground out. In the top of the 7th Cranford led off with a single. The next batter hit a possible double play ball, but the umpire ruled that Lipsey didn't touch 2nd base. All runners were safe. The next batter hit into a perfectly handled double play (643). That left a runner on 3rd base and two outs. The tension was almost unbearable. The count went to 3 & 2 on Cranford's ace, Feeley. The game ended when Feeley lofted a fly to left.
Bedlam broke out on the field as Summit celebrated, and Cranford stood in stunned silence. After a victory lap around the field, a small victory dance, the trophy award, and a team picture at the mound the team left the field with a stunning UNION COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP in their possession. You should have been there!

Jared Chellevold picked up the win and Jason Flores got a great save. (Note: Flores has now pitched 26 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run)
Luberto CF 3 1 0 0 1
Reilly 3B 3 1 0 0 0
Chellevold P 3 0 1 0 0
Bennett RF 3 1 2 2 0
Wheeless 2B 3 0 0 0 0
Mormak C 3 1 1 0 0
Campagna 1B 3 0 0 0 0
Lipsey SS 2 0 0 1 3
Dates LF 1 1 0 0 2
Flores P 0 0 0 0 0
TOTALS 24 5 4 3 6

Pitcher W/L IP H R ER BB HB WP K Ptchs %Strks
Flores - 2 2 0 0 1 0 0 2 33 69
Chellevold W 5 7 4 4 3 0 0 2 87 59