Delco team surges to Carpenter Cup victory

Posted: June 14, 2012

Jake Burrell stepped to the plate in the eighth inning just looking for something he could put in play. His Delaware County all-stars did not have a hit in its last 15 batters, and were tied 3-3 with the Philadelphia Public League.

He saw a fastball release out of Jacob Kurtz's hand. Burrell turned on the inside pitch for a run-scoring, stand-up double that drove in the winning run in what was a grinding, closer-than-it-sounds, 9-3 win for Delaware County in first-round action of the Carpenter Cup on Wednesday at FDR Park.

The tall designated hitter delivered what coach Kraig Kaufhold had been waiting for all afternoon: a clutch hit. And it helped ignite what Philly coach Juan Namnun had been fearing: a big inning.

"That was so clutch," Kaufhold said. "Everyone after that followed suit. That got the bats going for us."

Delaware County then plated five runs in the ninth.

The Public League was so close to getting out of the eighth inning unscathed, but a two-out error allowed Bill Buckwalter to reach base, before he scored on Burrell's double one pitch later.

The tournament plays nine-inning games as opposed to the seven innings that high school teams play, and plays into the hands of teams with depth, such as Delaware County, which used 18 batters and five pitchers. But through seven innings, the Public League played a patient game to stay in it. Philly just couldn't get a clutch hit when it needed one.

Philly stranded eight runners in the first seven innings despite having only three hits, taking advantage of walks and hit batters. In the second, the Pub had runners on second and third. In the fifth and sixth, the Pub stranded a runner in scoring position.

"The Public League has talent," Namnun said. "We just couldn't close it, couldn't get that hit when we needed. Just came a little short. Nine innings is a completely different animal."

Delco weathered the Public League's constant chipping away at an early 3-0 lead, surviving runs in the fourth, fifth, and seventh, before Burrell's knock gave them a one-run lead and ignited a five-run ninth that capitalized on Philly's mental and physical errors. Delco's Nos. 6, 7, 8, and 9 hitters all crossed the plate in the ninth.

"It's pretty exciting to get this win," Burrell said. "I was just happy to get it started."

In a way, he did just that. But really, Burrell's clutch double ended it.

Delaware County   000300015 - 970

Philadelphia Public   000110100 - 364

WP: Billy Vandergrift. LP: Jacob Kurtz. 2B: DC–Tom Carey, Jake Burrell, Sean Mohollen.

FIRST ROUND

Sunday

 SOL National/Bicentennial 9, Jersey Shore 7

Chester County 13, Philadelphia Catholic 7

SOL American/Continental 9, Delaware North 5

Monday

 Tri-Cape 18, Olympic Colonial 3

Lehigh Valley 12, Mercer County 3

Inter-Ac/Independents 12, Delaware South 11

Tuesday

Burlington County 12, Berks County 8

Wednesday

 Delaware County 9, Philadelphia Public 3

QUARTERFINALS

Thursday

 At Ashburn Field in FDR Park.

SOL National/Bicentennial at Chester County, 9 a.m.

Tri-Cape at SOL American/Continental, 12:30 p.m.

Friday

At Ashburn Field in FDR Park.

Lehigh Valley at Inter-Ac/Independents, 9 a.m.

Burlington County at Delaware County, 12:30 p.m.

SEMIFINALS

Sunday

9:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. at Citizens Bank Park.

FINAL

Monday

10 a.m. at Citizens Bank Park.

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