2016 Desert Classic: 55+
Inland Angels 4, South Bay Zephyrs 2
‘Myer Complete Game on the Hill Secures Victory’
By Alejandro Rodriguez, Special to MSBLNational.com
January 18, 2016, Cathedral City, CA – In a tightly contested game, the Inland Angels defeated the South Bay Zephyrs 4-2 to win the 55 division championship of the MSBL Desert Classic Tournament held at Cathedral City, CA.
The Angels opened the scored with two runs in the top of the fifth as Tom Fisher led off with a walk, Larry Phipps then reached on a fielder’s choice, Fisher then advanced to third on an error and Andy Vorhees then drove in Fisher with the first run on an RBI single. Phipps then scored on a double-play ground out to give the Angels a 2-0 lead.
In the bottom of the sixth, Raul Piette singled with one out and two batters later Joe Thrilkill drove in Piette with the Zephyrs first run and cut the Angels’ lead to 2-1.
In the top of the eighth Willie Jutze led off with a walk, Gary Phipps then singled and Dave Schuler doubled to score Jutze to make it 3-1. Mike Kander then singled to bring in Phipps to extend the Angels lead to 4-1.
In the bottom of the eighth Dan Williams singled with one out and Dave Mango followed it with and RBI double to get the Zephyrs to within 4-2. In the bottom of the ninth the Zephyrs tried to rally as they put runners at second and third with one out but were unable to score any further and came up two runs short.
Rick Myer pitched a complete game for the Angels, giving up two runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out three. Angels Manager Ted Poleto was most pleased with his team’s defense and complete team effort.
“We played great defense to back up Rick. We made the routine plays and didn’t make any errors. We got great pitching throughout the weekend and we got enough offense when we needed it.” Poleto credits his team’s closeness as a factor in their success. “We’ve got great chemistry, great camaraderie and it translates on the field. We enjoy playing this tournament. It’s always a great time coming out here.”
Despite the loss Zephyrs manager Antone Henley still felt his team put up a good effort. “We played well, a very good game on both sides. Both pitchers pitched well. Defensively in particular we played well and only gave up 10 runs total in five games but we made a couple mistakes and the made us pay for it. Good teams always do.”
Henley looks forward to returning with his team next year. “This was our first time coming here as a team. We enjoyed it and we look forward to coming back here. Next time the goal will be to win.”