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By Mitchell Broughton
Sunday night’s RCBL Finals contest between the Broadway Bruins and New Market Shockers contained a couple highly anticipated matchups. First it was the pitcher’s duel between 2020 Pitcher of the Year Adam Riggleman of Broadway and All-RCBL selection and strikeout leader Darrell Thompson of New Market. Two of the top (if not the best) arms in the entire league going head to head in the championship series.
Riggleman threw six innings for the Bruins. In his outing he only struck out four but held the Shockers to just three hits and two runs. Brett Whiteman came in for the Bruins in the seventh and was brilliant on the mound with six strikeouts and only two hits given up. Thompson, on the other hand, threw all nine regulation innings for New Market where he recorded 14 strikeouts, seven walks, and five hits. If this is the last time we see Thompson this season, he has 123 strikeouts in 10 games this year.
New Market opened up the scoring last night when Henry Delaverge hit a line drive to the wall and sped around the bases for a triple in the fifth inning. He scored the next at-bat when Matt Moon grounded out on the first base side of the infield. The very next inning Riggleman walked two out of the first three batters to put runners on first and second for the Shockers. Pearce Bucher singled past the glove of Bruins second baseman John Judy and would score Frankie Ritter and put men on second and third with just one out and a 2-0 lead. However the Bruins defense would make some plays to get the lead runner out going to home, and Riggleman struck out the last batter of the inning to contain the would’ve been big inning for New Market.
In the bottom of the seventh, Chase DeLauter led off for the Bruins, expecting to be intentionally walked following his three-home run performance on Thursday night. To everyone’s surprise, New Market coach Nolan Potts gave Thompson the signal to proceed with the meeting that everyone came to Eagle Field to witness, the most dominant pitcher against the most dominant batter. First pitch, Thompson blew a fastball past DeLauter for a strike. The next pitch was a breaking ball that DeLauter got contact with, breaking his bat, and singling up the gap into center field. After advancing to second off a wild pitch, DeLauter scored the first run of the night for Broadway after John Judy singled to left field. Judy would score himself a couple batters later when Natty Solomon hit a single of his own, tying the game up at 2-2.
Both teams had opportunities in the eighth and ninth innings to score but the defenses for each team played extremely well last night. Calvin Pastel entered the game on the mound for the Shockers in the bottom of the tenth inning. He struck out Tyler Ault and the Shockers intentionally walked DeLauter for the fourth time of the game to put a runner on first. Following an error by Pastel and an overturned call at first base, DeLauter advanced to third with two outs and John Judy up to bat. In game one we saw a similar situation where Judy was hit by a pitch in the bottom of the ninth with two outs to walk in the winning run for Broadway. With Judy at the plate and a 1-1 count, Pastel threw a low breaking ball that got through the legs of the catcher and Chase DeLauter would come home to score the walk-off run for Broadway. Words were exchanged by both sides following the winning score, and both dugouts cleared thankfully without any major physical altercation. It’s safe to say that emotions will be high tonight at Rebel Park when the Broadway Bruins have a chance to secure their first RCBL championship since 1938.
FINAL: Broadway 3 New Market 2. Win: Brett Whiteman (4-2). Loss: Calvin Pastel (1-1).
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