Steel City, Road Warriors Take First Game of Respective Semis

Friday, August 7, 2020
By Kyle Dawson
Steel City, Road Warriors Take First Game of Respective Semis

WASHINGTON, Pa. (August 7) - Semifinal week in the summer pod at Wild Things Park got underway Friday with two blowouts in game one of the two series. The Steel City Slammin' Sammies won 9-2 over the four seed, the Baseball Brilliance Sox, to allow the top seed to take a 1-0 lead and the Road Warrior Black Sox won 16-5 over the two-seeded Wild Things. The three-seeded Black Sox own a 1-0 series lead. 

Game one was pretty much all Steel City from the word go. Joe Campagna hit his fourth homer of the season in the home first to break open the scoring. Nick Ward went deep, which was a solo shot in the second, for his fourth of the year to make it 2-0. Later in the second, Saige Jenco, who celebrated his 26th birthday Friday, hit a two-run shot to right center, his first of the year. That blast made it 4-0. 

The Sox responded a bit in the fifth with an RBI double by Brennan Price, who later came across on a Nate Thompson sacrifice fly. Joe Campagna immediately got the runs back for the Slammin' Sammies, launching his second homer of the day. This time it was a two-run shot to make it 6-2. Later in the frame, Liam Sabino knocked him two with a double and scored himself on a Lucas Herbert single. That single capped the scoring, making it 9-2.

Nate Pawelczyk got the win after allowing two runs over five innings. He walked six but allowed just three hits and fanned three. Nate Peden took the loss for Baseball Brilliance, allowing seven runs over 4.2 innings. Elliot Forde and Austin Kitchen both worked two scoreless in relief for Steel City. 

The second game of the evening started in disastrous fashion for the Washington pitching staff. The Road Warriors scored the game's first 11 runs. In the second, John Havird walked the bases full and then gave up a sac fly to Corey Bass that made it 1-0. He'd get out of that with no more damage. In the third, with two outs, Drew Mount hit a solo homer to make it 2-0. Then the floodgates opened. The Road Warriors plated four on four hits, with the help of three free passes in the frame. They also left the bases full. The fourth inckuded an RBI triple by Derek Reddy, an RBI double by Sam Dexter, an RBI single by Mount and a bases-loaded walk to Danny Molinari.

The Black Sox then scored five in the fifth. Dexter walked with the bases loaded for the first run, before Mount knocked home two with a base hit and Rob DeAngelis brought home a pair with a double down the right-field line.

The Wild Things got two of their own in the bottom of the inning, the first on a homer, his first, by Joseph Fernando and the second on an RBI double by Stewart Ijames. 

Cas Silber started for the Road Warriors and allowed the two runs (one earned) over 5.2 innings. He fanned 10. 

The Road Warriors added three in the seventh. Corey Bass hit a two-run double and Brett Smith doubled him home to make it 14-2. Fernando's two run homer, his second long ball of the night, made it 14-4 in the eighth. Stewart Ijames came on to pitch the ninth for the Wild Things and allowed an RBI double to Carson McCurdy and a second run came in on an error that would've been a sacrifice fly. Hector Roa hit his third home run of the season in the bottom of the ninth before the score went final at 16-5.

Game 2 of each series takes place tomorrow at Wild Things Park. The matchups and time slots are the same. Steel City tries to win the series at 3 p.m. and the Road Warriors try to do the same at 7 p.m. A note to keep in mind, even if the series are won tomorrow, game three of each will be played Sunday. 

Box Score Game 1

Box Score Game 2