Brandon Bombers 11, Towson Titans 1
‘Boleska and Martin Lead the Way’
By Andy Villamarzo, special to MSBL
Clearwater, FL., November 12, 2016 – The Brandon Bombers are a youthful group that has been playing together for a short period of time, but is starting to figure out how winning feels at a young age on the adult amateur level.
On Saturday afternoon at the Carpenter Complex near Brighthouse Field, the Bombers completed a goal they set out a year ago since losing to the Towson Titans in a semifinal contest: Win a national championship. That milestone mark was reached by Damian Fedele’s squad against a very talented Towson team from Maryland, as the Bombers put together a masterful 9-inning performance, scoring 11 runs and keeping the Titans’ bats at bay en route to a dominant 11-1 victory and the 25-and-over national championship now resides in the Tampa Bay area.
“I think after we went through the pool play 5-0, I knew we had a pretty good team,” Fedele said. “I knew once the playoffs started that we were going to play some pretty good competition with good pitching. My hats off to Towson for a great game today. We were lucky to find some holes, but I think this team is a special group of guys and hopefully I can keep them together here for a little bit.”
The first few inning for Towson were especially tough, as the Titans were having problems getting out of the frames with no runs allowed. Issues started up in the first inning for the Titans, when the Bombers got three hits and two runs in the opening frame and the scoring barrage by Brandon would continue throughout the first half of the game.
Two more runs would cross the plate in the second inning when Pat Tufrao hit a triple and cleared the bases to give the Bombers a commanding 4-0 lead. A dominating pitching performance from Tom Boleska would take center stage for the Bombers. Boleska pitched a masterful game in helping his club pickup its first championship, and the right-hander went the full nine innings and struck out eight batters, allowed six hits and only walked one hitter.
“This was the big one for us,” Fedele added. “This is the first time we’ve won a national championship as a group, so hopefully there’s more to come for us. I don’t think words can put it altogether how excited we are for winning this championship. We’ve played in this tournament two years and have previously come as far as the semifinals. Last year, we lost to a talented Towson team in the semifinals. I think if we keep the core group of these guys together, we can make a little run.”
Taking home the Most Valuable Player honors was Brandon Bombers’ third baseman Willie Martin, who went 2-for-3 with two singles and a run driven in. Martin has been a major piece to the Bombers’ success over the last two weeks and helping Brandon achieve its ultimate goal of winning a national crown. Martin said that the chemistry the team has built through playing in numerous leagues together before taking part in the MSBL tournament helped the club accomplish the goal at hand.
“I think this is a group of guys who just really love playing baseball,” Martin said. “I think it starts with the managers, who put together a great group of players. The guys just knowing each other really well through playing together in leagues has really helped us to this point. Everybody competes in these local leagues and love baseball and love to be out here as much as they can.”