Big late inning scoring burst powers Mustangs to Far West Regional victory over Lions

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 1 June 2024 at 2:03 pm

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Medina pitcher Brody Fry celebrates after registering a game ending strikeout as the Mustangs downed Wellsville 8-3 in the Class B Far West Regional this morning at Grand Island High School.

A big late inning scoring burst earned Medina an 8-3 victory over Wellsville in the Class B Far West Regional this morning at Grand Island High School.

Breaking away from a 1-1 deadlock, Medina exploded for 7 runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to take control and earn a trip to the state semifinals this coming Friday in Binghamton.

A two-run single by Carter Woodworth capped off the decisive uprising for the Mustangs which also included an RBI single by Aidan Papaj, three runs on wild pitches and another on a balk. Singles by Woodworth and Brandon Christiaansen helped ignited the uprising.

“I just stayed with my approach and listened to my coaches,” said Woodworth who had a total of four hits on the day.

Papaj and Christiaansen also both banged out a pair of hits for the Mustangs.

Julian Woodworth moves in to make a catch in centerfield for the Mustangs.

Brody Fry went the distance on the mound for the Mustangs scattering 6 hits and striking out 9.

“I felt good and my defense played great behind me,” said Fry. “It’s pretty amazing.”

The Mustangs defense shined turning two key double plays in the first five innings. The first went from Papaj at shortstop to Preston Woodworth at second to Christiaansen at first. The second came in the fifth inning and went from Fry to Christiaansen.

Wellsville took a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning on a one out RBI single by Cooper Brockway. However, Medina got out of further trouble in the frame as a flyout to Julian Woodworth in centerfield and a groundout to Papaj at short ended the threat as the Lions left runners stranded at second and third.

Medina, which had likewise left runners stranded at second and third in the third inning, quickly knotted the score with a run in the bottom of the fourth on an RBI double by Carter Woodworth. An error and a sacrifice bunt by Preston Woodworth set up the opportunity.

The Mustangs also left runners stranded at second and third in a scoreless fifth inning before finally taking control with the big 7 run sixth inning scoring explosion.

Wellsville did pick up a pair of runs in the top of the seventh but Fry quickly shutdown the uprising with a clutch game ending strikeout his third of the inning.

Medina will now take a 20-1 record into the state semifinals while Wellsville finishes the season at 21-2. The appearance will be the third for the Mustangs which previous were defeated in the 2003 and 2019 state semis.

The Mustangs advanced to the Far West Regional by defeating Fredonia 4-3 for the Section VI Class B title while The Lions nipped Notre Dame 1-0 for the Section V Class B title.

Carter Woodworth had a big 4 hit, 3 RBI day to lead Medina at the plate.

Medina had a large crowd of fans on hand for the Regional at Grand Island.