Back Mountain American uses big inning in D31 semifinal win

By John Erzar - jerzar@timesleader.com
Back Mountain American third baseman Alexander Aiello leans back to make a catch on a pop fly by Kingston/Forty Fort’s Aaron Klosko in the second inning Thursday. - Fred Adams | For Times Leader
Kingston/Forty Fort shortstop Luke Kopec (22) nearly collides with second baseman Davis Motyka fielding grounder in the second inning Thursday. - Fred Adams | For Times Leader
Back Mountain American left fielder Myles Tirpak gets under a flyball for an out in the third inning Thursday. - Fred Adams | For Times Leader
Kingston/Forty Fort second baseman Davis Motyka makes a throw to first for an out in the fourth inning Thursday. - - Fred Adams | For Times Leader
Back Mountain American catcher Evan Kaiser stretches in an attempt to tag Kingston/Forty Fort’s Mason Matello as he crosses home plate in the third inning of Thursday’s District 31 Little League Major Baseball semifinal game. - - Fred Adams | For Times Leader

DALLAS — Rallies can start all different ways. This one started with an out on Thursday evening.

Yep, pinch hitter Mason Calvey’s flyout to right to start the fifth inning of a tied game seemed to ignite a Back Mountain American offense that hadn’t done much all day.

From there, American pounded out four hits and scored five times to defeat defending champion Kingston/Forty Fort 7-2 in the semifinals of the District 31 Little League Major Baseball tournament.

American will play Back Mountain National for the championship at 5:30 p.m. Monday at the Duryea Little League.

“(Calvey) is one of our reserve players,” BMA manager Spencer Chesman said. “He’s still an all-star, but he doesn’t start. But to get him up there and pound the ball like that, I think it gave everybody else a lot of confidence. … I really got to give it up to him because he started that rally.”

Seth Berry followed with a slow roller to short and was able to beat the throw. Evan Kaiser then launched a double to left, and Berry displayed his speed again by scoring from first to give BMA its first lead of the game, 3-2. After Tyler Casey was walked intentionally, he and Kaiser moved up a base on Tucker Chesman’s groundout. Ben Fenster knocked both of them in with a single to left.

A scary moment followed when Logan Sakulich was hit in the back of the helmet with a pitch. He was able to continue on and was also able to circle the bases on a error on Myles Tirpak’s single. Fenster also scored.

BMA reliever Casey got into some mild trouble in the top of the sixth as KFF’s Aaron Klosko singled and Antek Evan walked. But a strikeout and an excellent play by shortstop Berry, who stumbled and threw to first while falling, ended the game.

“We came in very confident,” Chesman said. “This is a good group of kids, kids with a lot of fight in them. And a lot of kids on this team have played a lot of baseball for a lot of years. So they really earned their stripes.”

BMA took a 1-0 lead in the first when Berry doubled down the right field line, moved to second on Kaiser’s single to right and scored on a wild pitch.

KFF answered back with two runs in the third for a 2-1 advantage. Jacob Stevens walked, Mason Matello singled and Luke Kopec walked to load the bases with no one out. Consecutive sacrifice flies by Davis Motyka and Mike Voziak plated the runs.

BMA tied the score 2-2 in the fourth. Chesman singled then went first to third on a beautiful sacrifice bunt by Joe “Bubba” Sowga. Chesman later scored on a wild pitch.

District 31 Major Baseball semifinals

Back Mtn. American 7, Kingston/Forty Fort 2

KFF`AB`R`H`BI

Stevens cf`2`1`0`0

Matello ph`1`0`0`0

Kopec ss`2`0`1`0

Motyka 2b`1`0`1`1

Vodziak 3b`2`0`0`1

Saporito lf`3`0`1`0

Klosko c`2`0`1`0

Connell ph`1`0`0`0

Kraus p`1`0`0`0

Evan rf`2`0`0`0

Klem rf`2`0`0`0

Gorham ph`1`0`0`0

Totals`23`2`5`2

BMA`AB`R`H`BI

L.Tirpak cf`2`0`0`0

Calvey ph`1`0`0`0

Berry ss`3`2`2`0

Kaiser c`3`1`2`1

Casey 1b`2`1`0`0

Chesman rf`2`1`1`0

Fenster 2b`2`1`1`2

Sowga ph`0`0`0`0

Sakulich p`2`1`1`0

M.Tirpak lf`2`0`1`1

Bucholtz ph`1`0`0`0

Aiell0 3b`0`0`0`0

Watkins ph`2`0`0`0

Totals`22`7`8`4

KFF` `002`000 — 2

BMA` `100`15x — 7

2B — Berry, Kaiser

KFF`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Kraus`4.0`4`2`2`2`4

Stevens L`1.0`4`5`4`1`1

BMA`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Saklulich`4.0`2`2`2`2`0

Casey W`2.0`1`0`0`2`3

Back Mountain American third baseman Alexander Aiello leans back to make a catch on a pop fly by Kingston/Forty Fort’s Aaron Klosko in the second inning Thursday.
https://www.mydallaspost.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_bkmt_kff1_faa.jpgBack Mountain American third baseman Alexander Aiello leans back to make a catch on a pop fly by Kingston/Forty Fort’s Aaron Klosko in the second inning Thursday. Fred Adams | For Times Leader

Kingston/Forty Fort shortstop Luke Kopec (22) nearly collides with second baseman Davis Motyka fielding grounder in the second inning Thursday.
https://www.mydallaspost.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_bkmt_kff2_faa.jpgKingston/Forty Fort shortstop Luke Kopec (22) nearly collides with second baseman Davis Motyka fielding grounder in the second inning Thursday. Fred Adams | For Times Leader

Back Mountain American left fielder Myles Tirpak gets under a flyball for an out in the third inning Thursday.
https://www.mydallaspost.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_bkmt_kff4_faa.jpgBack Mountain American left fielder Myles Tirpak gets under a flyball for an out in the third inning Thursday. Fred Adams | For Times Leader

Kingston/Forty Fort second baseman Davis Motyka makes a throw to first for an out in the fourth inning Thursday.
https://www.mydallaspost.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_bkmt_kff5_faa.jpgKingston/Forty Fort second baseman Davis Motyka makes a throw to first for an out in the fourth inning Thursday. Fred Adams | For Times Leader

Back Mountain American catcher Evan Kaiser stretches in an attempt to tag Kingston/Forty Fort’s Mason Matello as he crosses home plate in the third inning of Thursday’s District 31 Little League Major Baseball semifinal game.
https://www.mydallaspost.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_bkmt_kff3_faa.jpgBack Mountain American catcher Evan Kaiser stretches in an attempt to tag Kingston/Forty Fort’s Mason Matello as he crosses home plate in the third inning of Thursday’s District 31 Little League Major Baseball semifinal game. Fred Adams | For Times Leader
BMA uses big inning in D31 semifinal win

By John Erzar

jerzar@timesleader.com

Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar

Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar