MUNY/Buffalo MSBL, 45+ Division
Buffalo Nine Baseball Club 2, Buffalo Anvil 1
‘Buffalo Nine Walk-Off in Ninth to Secure Third Straight Title’
Submitted by Jim Lacki, Buffalo Nine manager
August 26, 2021 – It was a beautiful night for baseball at Losson Park in Cheektowaga, NY as Buffalo Anvil and the Buffalo Nine Baseball Club squared off for the third consecutive year in the MUNY/Buffalo MSBL 45+ championship game. It was a game for the ages as pitching and defense was the name of the game.
Buffalo Anvil would score their only run in the top of the first. The Nine evened the score in the second inning after a walk, two hit batsmen, and infield error. Stellar pitching and outstanding defense would keep the score 1-1 for the next six innings. In the Buffalo Nine’s bottom half of the ninth inning, Rick Foit (two hits) reached first base after being hit by a pitch. With a textbook sacrifice bunt, Ralph Proulx (MSBL HOF ’10), moved Foit to second. With a 1-2 count against player/coach Jim Lacki, Lacki launched a deep fly ball over the left fielder’s head to score Paul Yemma, who pinch ran for Foit, with the winning run. The 2-1 victory for the Buffalo Nine was in the books.
Mike LaRosa pitched five strong innings for The Nine scattering six hits. Fred Falkowski earned the win after pitching four shutout innings, allowing zero hits with four strikeouts. In addition to the hits by Foit and Lacki, Falkowski, Jim Poulos, John Catanzaro, and Dennis Gawronski (MSBL WS HOF ’17) each contributed hits in the win.
‘What a game’, said Proulx. ‘The two best teams in the league this year played the best championship game we’ve ever had. The pitching and defense were spectacular. Hats off to The Nine on capturing their third straight title’.
Added Lacki, ‘I think I’ve said this in years past, what a great group of guys. Great teammates and friends. Team players. The guys on this team have either played against each other or on the same team with each other for the past 30 years. Some of us played together in MSBL National Tournaments. When it’s playoff time, these guys pick it up a notch, compete like crazy and play their butts off. I am thankful for each and every one of them and glad we are teammates’.
In addition to the players previously mentioned, members of the Buffalo Nine are Dave Dukoff, Glenn Hauptman (Coach), Tom Hoffman, Tilo Mendiola, Dan Potwora, Jeremy Ross, and Dan Wierczbicki (player/coach).