CincySoftball.com

Premier Services/ Louisville Slugger Double-Dips EAP/ Goodtimers II 23-12, 14-13 In USSSA Tri-State Conference Championship “C” Finals At Mid-America

Colerain Township, Oh.–Premier Services/Louisville Slugger upended EAP/Goodtimers II 23-12 and 14-13 in a double finals to capture first place in the USSSA Class “C” Tri-State Conference Championship August 16-17 at Mid-America Ballyard.

 

EAP/Goodtimers II had claimed the winners’ bracket of the six-team affair, knocking off Premier/Louisville Slugger 15-10 in the winners’ bracket finals.

 

But Premier bounced back to dispose of S & H/Blackout Sports/Butterbees 16-9 in the losers’ bracket finals, then double-dipped EAP in the finals.

 

Premier compiled a 4-1 overall record, routing Rockstar/Yats 15-5 in their opener.  The champions outscored their opponents by a combined 78-54 overall margin.

 

Premier claimed $600 in travel expense, EAP $300, and 3rd place S & H $150.

 

The pitching and defense of tournament MVP Frank Gruber, the defensive play of shortstop Jordon Rosenbalm and left-fielder Brad Ballinger, and the offensive spark provided by Kyle Jamison (.750) and Brandon Slade (.710).

 

“Frank pitched outstanding,” said Premier manager Kevin Forwith.  “He kept us in games throughout the tournament.  And particularly when we didn’t hit the ball well and we got into slumps, he kept us close enough to win by holding teams to 0 or 1 run.  Also he fielded the middle really well, and he was a leader on the field, moving guys around and pitching to his defense.”

 

Jordan Rosenbalm anchored the infield defense, and made a key play in the second finals, said Forwith.

 

“In the bottom of the 5th in the ‘if’ game, when it was tied up and EAP had runners on 1st and 3rd with one out, a ball hit off of Frankie (pitcher Frank Gruber) and Jordan fielded it and turned an unassisted double play,” recalled Forwith.  “That kept the game tied and gave us the momentum we needed to get two solo home runs in the 7th and take a two-run lead.”

 

Brad Ballinger shined in the outfield, also turning in a game-changing play.

 

“He took a home run away from Rockstars in our first game,” said Forwith.  “It was the top of the 2nd and we were leading 3-1, and Rockstars hit a long fly ball, and he went over the fence to bring it back.  And that kind of gave us the momentum to come in and score nine in the 3rd.”

 

Kyle Jamison paced the offense with a hefty .750 performance.

 

“We had some injuries in the winners’ bracket finals, and he was our additional hitter, and he stepped up and hit the ball really well and had key hits in all our games,” said Forwith.

 

In addition to hitting .710, Brandon Slade had two key home runs.

 

“In the losers’ bracket finals Brandon had two, three-run home runs, and his second one put some distance between us and S & H,” said Forwith.  “They kept chipping away at the lead and his three-run home run in the 5th gave us a bigger cushion.”

 

Other hitting leaders for Premier included Brad Bruns and Jordan Rosenbalm, who each hit .570.

 

Premier/Slugger took an early 4-1 lead with three runs in the bottom of the 1st and one in the 2nd, then broke the game open with a nine-run 3rd en route to a 15-5, five-inning spanking of Rockstar/Yats in game one.  Frank Gruber had an rbi single to knot the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the 1st, then Brad Ballinger put his club ahead for good with a two-run double.  Steve Atkinson knocked in another run with a sac fly in the 2nd, then in the 3rd Josh Powell had an rbi double, Atkinson picked up two more rbi’s with a two-run double, and John Mulvihill socked a two-run homer to account for five of Premier’s nine runs.  Jordan Rosenbalm finished Rockstar off with a two-run walk-off homer in the bottom of the 5th.

 

Mike Snider, Powell and Frank Gruber each went 2-for-3 to lead the winners.

 

That lifted Premier into the winners’ bracket finals against EAP.  The two clubs battled to a 9-9 stalemate through four and a half innings, but EAP put up six unanswered runs – three in the bottom of the 5th and three in the 6th – to help seal a 15-10 victory.

 

Relegated to the losers’ bracket, Premier first clashed with S & H/Blackout Sports/Butterbees, which took an early 4-0 lead in the bottom of the 1st.  A Brandon Slade three-run blast and a Brad Ballinger rbi single quickly knotted the score in the top of the 2nd, then Chuck Lack launched a three-run bomb to put his club on top for good at 7-4.  Premier tacked on one in the 3rd on a Brad Bruns rbi single and one in the 4th on a Jordan Rosenbalm solo shot, then opened up a seven-run advantage with Slade’s second three-run homer of the game.  S & H trimmed the deficit down to 12-9 with three in the bottom of the 5th and one in the 6th, but Premier offset that with a four-run 7th.  Bruns and Slade each contributed an rbi double in the inning to close out the scoring.

 

Lack banged out four hits, and Kyle Jamison, Rosenbalm and Slade chipped in three hits apiece to pace the offense.

 

In the first finals, Premier jumped out to a 21-6 lead after two and a half and never looked back as they slugged their way past EAP 23-12 to force an ‘if’ game.  Premier exploded for nine runs in the top of the 1st and twelve in the 2nd, then added two in the 7th.  The 1st featured a Jordan Rosenbalm rbi double, a Chuck Lack two-run double, and a Brad Bruns slammer.  Rosenbalm picked up two rbi’s in the 3rd with a base hit and a solo shot, Adam Littlman delivered an rbi double, and Brad Ballinger and Steve Atkinson each cracked a three-run homer.  Lack and Josh Powell both added a solo shot in the 7th.

 

Powell collected four hits, and Rosenbalm and Kyle Jamison combined for six.  Pitcher Frank Gruber and Premier’s defense held EAP scoreless over the final three innings.

 

The two finalists fought to 12-12 tie through six innings of the second finals, then with two outs in the top of the 7th, Josh Powell and Brandon Slade delivered back-to-back solo shots to give Premier a 14-12 lead.  EAP’s Kevin Greene and Carrie Taylor singled leading off the bottom of the 7th, but Josh Brown grounded into a fielder’s choice, moving Green to 3rd.  Greene then scored on a sac fly to make it a one-run game, but pitcher Frank Gruber induced the next batter to fly out to Brad Ballinger in left to end the game.

 

Ballinger also went 3-for-4 to power the champions offensively.  Powell and Bruns shared four hits.

 

Premier manager Kevin Forwith called the second finals “an outstanding game between us and EAP.

 

“It went back and forth,” said Forwith.  “There were momentum shifts about every other inning for each team.  Fortunately the double play by Jordan Rosenbalm in the bottom of the 5th allowed us to keep the momentum for a couple of innings until we grabbed the lead back in the 7th.”

 

Timely home runs and “solid defense” had carried Premier past EAP in the first finals.

 

“Our bats started to wake up in the 1st inning, and we jumped out to a sizable lead,” said Forwith.  “They kept chipping away and we used our home runs efficiently with two, three-run home runs in the 3rd by Brad Ballinger and Steve Atkinson, and played solid defense again.”

 

In the winners’ bracket finals, EAP simply “out hit us,” remarked Forwith.
“We tried to stay in the game with our defense, but they did a good job of shutting down innings when they got in trouble.  Sharpie (pitcher Dan Sharp) did a good job pitching in that game, shutting us out in the 4th, 5th and 6th.”

 

For final standings, tournament game scores and all-tournament team, please paste the following url into your browser: http://www.usssa.com/sports/tournament3.asp?TournamentID=1091545

 

This article is also available for viewing at www.ohiousssasoftball.com.

Premier Services/Louisville Slugger double-dipped EAP/Goodtimers II 23-12 and 14-13 to capture first place in the USSSA Class “C” Tri-State Conference Championship August 16-17 at Mid-America Ballyard.  Front row, left to right, are Kevin Forwith, Mike Snider, Brad Ballinger, Brad Bruns, Alex Rulon, Frank Gruber, and Josh Powell.  In the back row are Craig Patterson, Ryan Uckotter, Kyle Jamison, Steve Atkinson, Tony Lack, Brandon Slade, Chuck Lack, Adam Littman, Jordan Rosenbalm, Patrick Foster, and Aaron Brewster.  Photo courtesy of Premier Services/Louisville Slugger softball team.

Premier Services/Louisville Slugger double-dipped EAP/Goodtimers II 23-12 and 14-13 to capture first place in the USSSA Class “C” Tri-State Conference Championship August 16-17 at Mid-America Ballyard. Front row, left to right, are Kevin Forwith, Mike Snider, Brad Ballinger, Brad Bruns, Alex Rulon, Frank Gruber, and Josh Powell. In the back row are Craig Patterson, Ryan Uckotter, Kyle Jamison, Steve Atkinson, Tony Lack, Brandon Slade, Chuck Lack, Adam Littman, Jordan Rosenbalm, Patrick Foster, and Aaron Brewster. Photo courtesy of Premier Services/Louisville Slugger softball team.

Share

Short URL: http://www.cincysoftball.com/?p=9887

Posted by on Aug 21 2014.
Filed under All, Headlines, Mid-America Ballyard News, News, picture, Tri-State Conference, USSSA News.
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.
Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

This article has had:  2,533 views

Comments are closed

Log in | Designed by Gabfire themes