Elba edges Sandstone for Midget League title

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 16 July 2023 at 3:16 pm

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Elba second baseman Ky Spurling makes an outstanding diving catch for an out in the final inning of the Lancers 4-2 win over Sandstone in the Albion Midget League championship game this afternoon at Sandstone.

No. 2 seed Elba trimmed top seeded Sandstone 4-2 in the Albion Midget League playoff championship game this afternoon at Sandstone.

Trailing 1-0, Elba rallied into the lead for good by scoring three times with two out in the second inning on an RBI single by Daniel Mudsinski and a two-run double by Aiden Downs.

Elba added an insurance run in the third on a double by winning pitcher Tate Zuber and an error.

Sandstone took a quick 1-0 lead in the first inning on singles by Eli Johnson and Brayden LaMartina.

Sandstone later cut the deficit to 4-2 with a run in the fourth frame on a fielders choice play off the bat of Landon Gallagher after three walks had loaded the bases. However, Zuber got out of further trouble by registering a pair of clutch inning ending strikeouts.

Sandstone did get a pair of runners aboard in the final inning after a walk and a double by Gallagher but could not score as Zuber notched his 10th strikeout of the afternoon to close out Elba’s title victory. He allowed only two hits on the day.

Ben Landers had two hits on the day for Elba.

Both teams had big defensive plays. Elba second baseman Ky Spurling made a sparkling diving catch for the first out in the final inning. For Sandstone, Brayden Lindke, Rocco Sidari and Omer Fugate combined to turn a double play in the second inning.

Elba advanced to the finals by downing Barre 9-0 in one semifinal while Sandstone bested Carlton 4-0 in the other semi.

Sandstone’s Eli Johnson slides into home to score a first inning run. The Elba catcher is Kyle Hallmark.