Chicago North TSP Lookouts 12, Tri Valley Giants 11 (10 innings)
‘MVP Torresso Drives in Game Clincher’
By Rodney Johnson, special to MSBL National
November 5, 2016, Tempe Diablo Stadium-It took nearly three and one-half hours and ten innings, but after 23 runs and 39 hits, we have a 45+ Central Division champion. The Chicago North TSP Lookouts outlasted the Tri-Valley (California) Giants 12-11 in the 2016 title game.
It wasn’t easy. Trailing 9-3 in the bottom of the seventh, the Lookouts exploded for five runs to pull within one. The nail biting continued into the ninth when Chicago, down to its last out, tied the game on an RBI single by George Jimenez to send the game to extra innings.
In the top of the tenth with one out, Calvin Thomas knocked a long triple to center field. Jamie Jones walked sending James Bell to the bench as George Jimenez came on to pitch to Clint Romero with runners at the corners. With the infield in, Romero grounded a single to center to bring home the go-ahead run. Demetrius Adams then lined a single to left field scoring an insurance run and giving Tri Valley a two run lead. Ken Beecham grounded into a double play to end the inning.
Things looked bleak for the Lookouts after Fernando Naranjo struck out Tony Niezyniecki, hit Dennis Weiner with a pitch and then struck out Steve Sandman. Once again down to their last out, Chicago came back.Greg Rieves reached on a throwing error with Weiner scoring on the play. Bob Gilespie lined a single to leftfield scoring Sandman who had run for Rieves, and the game was tied. Sandman then ran for Gilespie at first. With Don Bell at the plate, another infield error set up the game winner. Mike Torresso lined a single to right field scoring Sandman with the clincher.
Ironically it was two tenth inning errors that cost Tri Valley the game. “Pool play was all pitching and defense for us,” lamented Giants manager Art Scears. “After our first game debacle of giving up 16 runs, we gave up nine runs the rest of the way.” The Giants outscored their opponents 10-2 in their two playoff wins. Both games were five inning contests due to rain. Naranjo pitched complete games in both contests. One of the unsung stars for the Giants was Christine Camp, the wife of player Stephen Camp. “Christine has been with us all tournament keeping the book and making sure I don’t screw something up,” praised Scears.
Scoring late was nothing new for Chicago North. After gong 5-1 in pool play, the top seeded Lookouts squeaked by in both of their rain-shortened five-inning playoff wins. Down 2-0 in the bottom of the fourth, Chicago rallied to beat the eight-seeded Brew City Bat Panthers 3-2. In the semi-final contest against another Chicago team, the Lookouts broke up a scoreless tie with a pair of runs in the last inning to win 2-0 and advance to the final. “David Joseph has been our horse,” praised Lookouts manager Tony Niezyniecki. “He has pitched 40 innings this week (3.3 more in the championship game) and our catcher Oscar Samano has caught every inning.” Mike Torresso, who got the game winning hit, was named the tournament MVP for the Lookouts.
Pitching Line: Giants: C. Thomas, F. Naranjo (7). Lookouts: D. Joseph; T. Niezyniecki(4); J. Bell (8); G. Jimenez (10)
WP:G. Jimenez LP: F. Naranjo
2B:Romero 2 (TV); A. Jones (TV); Sandman (CHI); Torresso 2 (CHI),
Leading Hitters: Tri Valley: C. Romero 3×5, 2 2B, 2 RBI; D. Adams 3×6, 2 RBI; R. Acciaioli 3×5; M. Lopez 3×5, 2B, RBI; S. Camp 3×5, 3 RBI. Lookouts- D. Bell 2×6, 2 R; M. Torresso 3×6, 2 2b, 2 R, 4 RBI; G. Jimenez 3×5, 2 RBI; B. Gilespie 3×5, 2 RBI.
SB:Rodriguez 2 (PA).
Team LOB:Giants 13; Lookouts 11
Time of Game: 3:28