by John Pezzuto

The Cardinals won their 8th game to clinch the regular season championship by beating the Tigers in the last game before the league takes a break to play games versus former partner Hill House.

The Tigers scored in the top of the 1st on a walk, stolen base, wild pitch and an infield single by DJ DiCenso.  But the Cardinals battled right back with 3 in their half of the 1st.  Francesco Santaniello led off with a walk, went to 3rd on a single by JC Pezzuto and scored on a single by Owen Locke.  On Locke’s hit, Pezzuto took 3rd and Locke advanced to 2nd on the throw.  A hit batsman loaded the bases and a Texas Leaguer by Fred Moseley plated the go ahead run.  The 3rd run scored when the next pitch got past the Tigers catcher.  The Cardinals added to their lead in their next at bat on 2 walks and 2 wild pitches.

In the bottom of the 3rd, the Cardinals extended their lead to to 6-1 on 3 singles, the 1st by Oliver Franklin and then RBI singles by Moseley and Francesca Rubino.

But the Tigers battled back.  In the 4th, 2 walks and a hit batsman loaded the bases with 2 outs.  A wild throw back to the pitcher allowed the Tigers to score their 2nd run.  With runners on 2nd and 3rd, Rubino made a nice running catch in right center to keep the lead at 4.

Fortunato D’Ampolo came on to pitch for the Tigers and kept the Cardinals at bay through the 5th inning, setting the stage for a Tigers rally in the 6th.  It started with a walk to Meghan Leavitt.  Kyle Bernadini singled and after an out, consecutive singles by D’Ampolo and Phil DiBlasi made the score 6-5 with 1 out.  DiBlasi stole 2nd to put the tying run into scoring position.  But Santaniello stiffened and struck out the next 2 Tigers to preserve the win and give the Cardinals the regular season championship.

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