STROUDSBURG – The Tamaqua and Northwest Little League game Sunday afternoon felt more like a homerun derby than a Section 6 11-12 year-old tournament game.
The two teams combined to hit seven home runs on the day – all solo shots – and recorded 25 hits during their slugfest.
In the end, it would be Tamaqua holding on to a three-run lead in the sixth and knocking off Northwest, 10-7, in the loser's bracket of the double-elimnation tourney. Tamaqua's Cody Scherer sat down Northwest in order in the final inning to notch the save for the locals. It turned out to be the only half-inning in which no runs were scored.
"Our team doesn't quit," said Tamaqua manager Charlie Kistler. "(Northwest) doesn't quit either and they are a great team. It was a great game.
"We tagged a couple of home runs off of them. To be honest, even some of the kids who haven't been hitting through districts and sectionals came through big for us. Then Cody coming to the mound and finishing the game in under 20 pitches. Now we have him for (Monday)."
Tamaqua started off a little shaky in the field. Of the four runs it surrendered in the first two innings, three scored on an error. Fortunately for Tamaqua, the three blunders would be the last mistakes it would make for the remainder of the game.
"At times they don't take what we give them," said Kistler. "I think they get nervous. They are 12-year-old kids and they get nervous. Thankfully we played great defense after that."
The first bomb of the day was dropped by Ty Kistler in the second. He went deep to center for Tamaqua's second run of the day. The locals would add a home run in each of the next three innings, with Casey Rother, Ryan Frederickson and Zeke Wassell all connecting for solo homers. It's the ability to go deep at any moment that gives Tamaqua an advantage heading forward.
"It's great," Kistler said on his team's fancy for the longforward.
"It's great," Kistler said on his team's fancy for the longball. "From one through eight, we pretty much have the power at any time to put one out. Things like that can really change the momentum of the game at this level."
The game was back-and-forth early on before Tamaqua took the lead for good with a three-run fourth. After Frederickson opened the inning with his homerun, Rother singled in Dair Miller five batters later. Scherer also scored on the play thanks to a throwing error.
Rother had the best day of all the locals. He finished the game 4-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored. Scherer (3-for-4), Wassell (2-for-4) and Josh Inama (2-for-4) also had at least two hits for Tamaqua.
Tamaqua's next game will be tonight at 5:30 and it will play Stroudsburg, a 17-2 loser to Warwick. Warwick defeated Tamaqua 18-0 in the first round, while Stroudsburg knocked off Northwest 14-12.
Nevertheless, Kistler and his Tamaqua team live to fight another day.
"We'll be here," said Kistler. "I'm not going to make any predictions, but we'll be here."
Tamaqua 121 321 - 10 16 3
Northwest 131 110 - 7 9 4
Rother, Zuber (2), Scherer (5) and Inama; Anthony, Albino (4), Laudenslager (5) and McGraw, Timar (3). W-Zuber, L-Albino, S-Scherer. HR: T – Kistler (2nd, none on), Rother (3rd, none on), Frederickson (4th, none on), Wassell (5th, none on); NW – Morgan (3rd, none on), Schmoyer (4th, none on), Anthony (5th, none on).