No sports season would be complete without an upset, even Sedona’s Adult Summer Softball League.
The No. 7 seed L’Auberge Mighty Ducks beat No. 2 Reddell Construction 8-2 in their quarterfinal. The Mighty Ducks have been one of the most upstart teams in recent weeks, winning their last four going into the penultimate day of the season on Thursday, Aug. 17.
“I think we just picked up some momentum mid-year and then we keep having the same people showing up so the same people get playing time, getting more practice and doing better,” Mighty Ducks’ Hunter Zwart said. “Defense has definitely stepped it up from when we first started this year.”
It was Reddell’s second loss of the day after it dropped its last game of “A” Division play to Pagos 10-7.
The pivotal matchup with the Mighty Ducks saw nine-man Reddell get on the board first. Larry Perry stretched a two-out double into a triple and Kado Keane knocked him home in the bottom of the second inning.
L’Auberge had already threatened, leaving three men on base in the top of the second, but in the top of the third made sure to cash in.
Again the bases were loaded and again there two outs on the board. Zwart crushed a grand slam over the left field fence to give his team a 4-1 lead while also deflating the Reddell side.
L’Auberge retired Reddell’s next six batters while it tacked on two more runs, the second off the back of a throwing error.
“We weren’t hitting the ball at all,” Perry said. “Just like before when we lost, no excuses. We just need to hit the ball. They hit that home run and it just killed us.”
Keane batted in Jeff Lynch for their team’s final run in the bottom of the fifth. The Mighty Ducks responded with two more of their own to close out the upset.
“L’Auberge is a good team. They were good last year and they’re good around playoff time, and they came out strong,” Perry said.
Earlier on Pagos secured the No. 4 seed after beating Reddell 10-7 in an offensive slugging match. Down 4-0, Pagos began to chip away in the second inning, and cut the deficit to 4-3.
Shane Trimble bumped his team’s lead to 5-3, but a pop up stranded an extra run on third base.
Pagos’ Kyle Abrigo and Nando Machado got to second and third with zero outs, eventually scoring to knot the game at five. Reddell regained the lead at 7-5 after a home run by Jack McMahon.
But two walks and three hits in consecutive fashion again tied it at seven, then Cesar Felix gave his team its first lead at 8-7. Rodolfo Martinez secured the win by driving in the final two runs.
“Our batting came back again,” Mauro Trahin Sr. said. “Everyone was relaxed and having fun.
All in all, Perry was content with how the season went.
“I’m really happy with our season because we didn’t come in with a full squad and we had a good showing. This team is pretty much family, so win or lose, it happens.”
A Day in the West grabbed the No. 1 seed after beating eight-man Red Rocks Rotary 15-6. Rotary held a 6-2 advantage until the fourth frame. The defending champions were a two-out nightmare and scored four of their five runs with no room for error to go up 7-6.
Five straight hits in the fifth opened a 9-6 lead. A troublesome pop up allowed the 11th run to score, and four more saw off the Rotary team that had the best defense in the regular season, but struggled with two fewer players.
“They can place the ball anywhere,” Rotary’s Chris Plouffe said. “The last few innings they smashed it down the line and started hitting the gaps.”
While some teams advanced to the final day of the season, four others saw their 2017 come to a close.
ABC Body Shop forfeited its game against Rough Country Pools & Spa. Rough Country later fell to A Day in the West 11-1 in their quarterfinal contest.
Rough Country led 1-0 in the first on a sacrifice fly, but it was all A Day in the West after.
Despite the loss, Tony Franklin was nothing but happy about the season.
“It’s just fun. This is the first time I’ve played in a long time just for fun,” Franklin said. “This is a fun place to play, it beats any other.”
Rokzoo Bucket List fell to Pagos 10-9 in their quarterfinal. Javier Somosa and Don Bauder scored in the first to go up 2-0. Pagos rebounded with five runs and led by as many as five before Rokzoo stormed back.
Ricardo Romero walked and Edgar Rodriguez hit a double off of the outfield fence. With two outs Adam Rodriguez started a streak of hits that tied the game at seven, reigniting interest in the game.
Both defenses shut down the opposing offenses until Rokzoo went up 8-7 when Edgar Rodriguez scored. But Pagos’ Franchesco Pacheco led off the fourth with a triple and immediately scored off of Felix’s single. Two singles, a fielder’s choice and a pop out led to a 10-8 lead.
Rokzoo nearly tied it in the fifth, but ran out of time.
“We had a blast. Every week it was a struggle to get players ... sometimes we would play with as little as eight guys,” Rokzoo’s Sonny Rodriguez said. “When we had 10 guys our defense was as good as any.
“That’s why we come up here to play, because it’s a beautiful environment and it’s a little more low-key than other leagues.”
There is one quarterfinal left to be played: No. 6 Dirty Rats against No. 3 Rotary. The winner of that game plays L’Auberge while Pagos and A Day in the West are in the other semifinal.
A Day in the West beat Pagos 7-5 earlier in division play, but Pagos picked up the win in the regular season. The Mighty Ducks, who started 1-6 through five weeks and 3-7 after the regular season, lost to Rotary in their only matchup.
Adult Summer Softball
Week 12 — Tournament Schedule
Game 5, Quarterfinal, 6:15 p.m., Upper Field
No. 3 Red Rocks Rotary vs. No. 6 Dirty Rats
Game 6, Semifinal, 7:30 p.m., Upper Field
No. 1 A Day in the West vs. No. 4 Pagos
Game 7, Semifinal, 7:30 p.m., Lower Field
No. 7 L’Auberge Mighty Ducks vs. Winner of Game 5
Game 8, Championship Game, 8:45 p.m., Upper Field
Winner of Game 6 vs. Winner of Game 7
|Team Statistics through Weeks 9 - 11 [Division play and Tournament]|
|Team||Record||Runs For||Runs Against|
|A Day in the West||4-1||49||26|
|Red Rocks Rotary||2-3||30||28|
|Rokzoo Bucket List||0-5||23||46|
|L'Auberge Mighty Ducks||3-1||45||21|
|Rough Country Pools & Spa||2-3||35||38|
|ABC Body Shop||0-4||9||57|