65 wood bat central division champion Ohio Classics

Dan Gates leads the Classics with a 5 for 5 day at the plateOhio Classics 14, San Diego Angels 3

By Gabe Chavez, MSBLNational.com

Fitch Field #4, Oct. 28, 2012 – Newt Reash scattered four hits over seven innings, and Doran Ryan tossed two shutout innings of relief as the Ohio Classics plucked the San Diego Angels 14-3 in the 65 Wood Bat Central finals of this year’s MSBL World Series in Arizona.

MVP and left-handed shortstop Dan Gates led the offensive attack going 5-for-5 and scoring three runs for the Classics, while Ryan went 4-for-5 with two triples to help his own cause. Doug Lane also scored three runs, and Steve Masten and Gary Seeger each drove in two runs in the lopsided victory.

The win helped ease the sting of an earlier tournament loss to the Angels. The Classics actually won the game 5-3, but the Angels lodged a protest saying that the Classics did not bat the right number of hitters in accordance with the rules. The protest was upheld by tournament director Tom Prendergast and, instead of a 5-3 win, the Classics were saddled with a 9-0 forfeit loss.

MVP Dan Gates with winning manager George Hughes

In the semi-final games, the Angels stopped Team America, 16-4, while the Classics outscored the New England Red Sox, 24-11, to set up the rematch which turned out to be more of a mismatch.

The Angels were down 12-0 entering the bottom of the fifth. With the help of walks to Joe Maiden, Bob Pearson, and Joe Tarka, the Angels scored three runs. Ricky Williams drove in the final Angel run before Reash got Ken Smith to ground out to stop the rally.

The Classics scored five times in the fifth inning on two hits and four Angels errors to pad their lead.

Scoring runs was not too much of a problem for the Classics. They chalked up 119 runs in eight games while allowing only 47 – and those totals count the 9-0 forfeit they were made to absorb.

The 65 Central Division, a new division at the World Series, featured 10 teams, while the 65 American and 65 National hosted five teams each.