2011 PCBL Major Division Summer Championship
Saturday, August 20th @ 7:00pm / USC Dedeaux Field
Titans -vs- Baracudas


Cudas "Trump" the Titans and Claim 6th Straight Title

By Scot Sweet / PCBL Staff Writer



They devoured the Tigers 13-1 in ’06. They clobbered the Coyotes 19-6 in ‘07. They beat the Blue Jays in a 17-12 shootout on ’08. They edged the Gauchos 3-2 in ’09. And they once again denied the Blue Jays of a title in 2010; beating them by a score of 11-8. Yes … the ‘Cudas ARE the PCBL Summer Champs … Period! No need to even put a year before the title anymore. Not after claiming their 6th consecutive PCBL Summer Championship this past week at USC’s Dedeaux Field in Downtown L.A.
But it wasn’t easy and it certainly didn’t look like the ‘Cudas were on their way to victory in this championship contest. Not by a long shot. They were out-manned and out-numbered. Nonetheless, refer back to paragraph #1. They ARE the ‘Cudas. And they always seem to find a way to win. This is how it went down on THIS particular evening in the house of Trojan Baseball.

The Titans come up to bat in the top of the 2nd inning with the game still scoreless. Blake Lichtig leads off with a double to center. He’s followed by catcher Jason Sabolic who singles him home. The Titans settle for a single run in the inning to take a 1-0 lead.
The score would remain 1-0 Titans as we entered the top half of the 6th inning. The Titans send up 3rd baseman Casey Starr with 1 out in the inning. He singles up the middle. 2nd baseman Peter Nelson follows with a single of his own. Moments later, Starr scores on a past ball. The Titans end up with 1 run in the inning to increase their lead on the defending champs; now leading 2-0.

With the ‘Cudas only getting 1 hit through the 1st 5 innings of play; it was clear that they had to do something before their dream of 6 straight titles evaporates. They led off the bottom of the 6th inning with Younkis Turino who singles. He’s followed by 3rd baseman Alain Mora who responds with a single to right; putting 2 on and nobody out for leadoff hitter Jarrod Schwartz. He drills a base hit to right center to score a pair. The Cudas end up with 2 runs in the inning; tying this game at 2 apiece through 6 complete innings of play.
The Titans fail to score in the top of the 7th inning; shifting the momentum to the ‘Cudas as they come to bat in the bottom of the inning. They lead off with right fielder Brian Trump who was 0 for 2 on the day. He comes through big time with a solo shot over the wall in dead center field. The Cudas settle for the lone run in the inning; but take their first lead of this championship; up 3-2 through 7 innings.
The top of the 8th inning Titans 3rd baseman Greg Williams singles to right field, next batter Ryan Smith is hit by a pitch. However, the next 2 batters would be retired, leaving the Titans scoreless in the inning. Cudas up 3-2 after 7 ½ innings of play.
Then came the bottom of the 6th inning … and it was as though a switch had been turned on in the Cuda dugout. The Titans put Rod Boaz on the mound to relieve Greg Acheatel. He strikes out Younkis Turino and it appears as though this game is going to go down to the wire. But then the ‘Cudas played their Trump Card ….

Alain Mora singles to center and then advances to 2nd base on a past ball soon thereafter. Leadoff hitter Jarrod Schwartz struck out for the 2nd out; sending up Nick Gontmehr who draws a walk. Adam Geery also walks; loading the bases for Justin Collins who also walks to force in a run. Soon after, Nick Gontmehr scores on a wild pitch. Brian Trump steps to the plate with 2 on and 2 out. In his last at bat, he hit a solo shot over the center field wall. He drives a shot 420 feet deep over left center field for a 3-run homer! Back to back homeruns for Brian Trump! The next batter is Justin Keene … and he also goes deep over right center field for a solo shot. The Cudas end up with 6 huge runs in the inning; all but sealing victory in this championship.
Cudas pitcher Mike Kestin closed the door and the Titans would go quietly in the top of the 9th. Congratulations to the 2011 Major League Division Champion Cudas on their 6th consecutive title! They proved once again that they are the team to beat in the top division. Though there were several contributors to this championship victory, the game MVP would go to right fielder Brian Trump; who hit the back to back homeruns in the 7th and 8th inning. He produced 4 late RBI’s when the Cudas needed them and was key in attaining this 6th consecutive title. Congratulations!

Titans     0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0   2 8 1
Cudas   0 0 0 0 0 2 1 6 -    9 8 1

Pitching Stats:

(SP) L. Kowolski (Cudas) 6IP; Allowed 2 runs on 7 hits; 1 BB & 2 K’s
(WP) M. Kestin (Cudas)  3IP;  Allowed 0 runs on 1 hit; 1 BB & 3 K's
(LP) G. Acheatel (Titans) 3IP; Allowed 3 runs on 3 hits; 0 BB & 5 K’s

Game Time:   7:25pm  -  10:45pm   (3 hours 20 mins)


1st Base  (Brian Marine)
2nd Base (Dax Villalta)
3rd Base  (John Visciglia)
Plate   (Dale Gardner)