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7, Puget Sound 4
Tosses Complete Game Victory for Title'
Modrich, special to MSBL
November 5, 2016, Tempe #4 – Ted Poleto’s Inland Angels are no stranger to adversity. They’ve
conquered it again and again. Saturday
was no different – as the Angels dug themselves out of an early 2-0 hole
and withstood a late rally to top the Puget Sound Mariners 7-4 to earn the 2016 Cactus Division 60+ World Series title.
the week we battled back from 8-0 and 7-0 deficits,” Poleto said. "We won our
last seven straight. It was a team effort all the way.”
starter Rick McGauhey went the distance for Inland and got the win, striking
out two Mariners and issuing just three walks in nine innings.
RBI double by Leroy McClain and a single by Bob Whitacre drove in McClain,Puget Sound jumped out to an early lead in the first. McGauhey
kept the Puget Sound hitters off balance for the most part, tossing seven
shutout innings and inducing nine fly ball outs.
started mixing everything in,” McGaughey said. "I throw a lot of knuckle balls.
The fastball offsets it. I hit them with the curveball when they were looking
for both.” The
Inland defense was able to track down several well-hit balls and saddle
McGauhey with a comfortable lead. "It was
fantastic,” McGaughey said. "I’ve never played with a better bunch of guys in
defining moment of Inland’s second three-run rally came in the fifth, when Steve Spelman roped a triple down into the right field corner to score Poleto and reignite a lineup that had gone down in order the inning before.
"He was a
good pitcher – I got lucky,” Spelman said of his hit off Puget Sound’s Kevin
Olds. "I don’t even know what it was – a fastball or slider – I just
turned on it and it stayed fair. I haven’t hit a ball like that for years. It
when McGaughey began to show signs of fatigue in the late innings, he got aninsurance run in the eight that would prove useful when the Mariners tacked on
a pair of runs thanks to back-to-back singles and heads-up base running from Rick Filush and Leroy McClain.
pounded out 12 total hits, three of them for extra bases, and tagged Puget
Sound starter Kevin Olds with the loss. Clutch
hitting has been a characteristic of Poleto’s teams, especially this season.
picked each other up,” Spelman said. "Everybody was hot at one time or another,
there were a few guys that were hot all the time, and that’s what you need to
with this thing.” The
Angels and their dugout chemistry proved resilient yet again, capturing a
Cactus Division World Series title after a hard-fought playoff run.
battled straight up,” Poleto said. "Everybody rooted for each other, everybody
supported each other. We’re just real proud to be the winners of the 60