Boston Wolfpack 8, All-Star Baseball Academy 7
By Sterling Endicott
The Boston Wolfpack took two out of three in the finals to win the 2021 MSBL Holiday Classic in Vierna, Florida. Playing in their 21st Holiday Classic, the Pack went 3-0 in the round robin at the beautiful USSSA Space Coast Complex. All-Star Baseball Academy also went 3-0 in the round robin, so the two teams faced off in the first ever best of three Championship Series.
Game one at Space Coast Stadium was won by ASBA, 2-1, as Jeff Tomlinson outdueled Mike Smith. The Pack’s bats came alive in game two as Jim Kearschner held the Academy to three runs and Boston won 10-3 led by Efrain Nieves’ three hits and four RBIs Russ Ward, Smith and German Rivera each had two hits as the Pack tied the series at one game apiece.
That set up game three for the National Division Championship. ASBA scored three in the top of the first on three hits and three errors but the Wolfpack matched them in the bottom of the first, scoring three on five hits and a 2-run double by Mark Whiten. The game went back and forth from their until it was 6-6 in the bottom of the eighth. With two on and two outs, Nieves hit a bases clearing double to put the pack ahead by two.
ASBA didn’t back down as Tomlinson led off the ninth with a single and an error put the tying run on second base with no outs. Whiten came in in relief and got the last three outs and an 8-7 victory for the Pack.
Jose Delgado (3 hits, 2R), Rivera (2 hits, 2R), Whiten (2 hits, 5 RBIs), and Nieves (3 hits, 3 RBIs) led Boston with Nieves being named tournament MVP.