In a game that could be the championship clincher for Hoboken Pioneers, that club was a ghost of its last week’s self. It resulted in a 6-4 victory for the Deurne Spartans.
Deurne Spartans 6 – 4 Hoboken Pioneers
It was one of those games in which Pioneers collected six more hits than Spartans, but still lost.
During this game, the home plate umpire had a variable strike zone. Spartans’ Anderson Denny Gerdel Nieto was able to deal with this. His opponent, Kenny van den Branden, who pitched the final game of his impressive career, struggled through five innings.
Spartans played smart baseball, combining timely hitting with small ball, and aggressive base running. In the second inning, the team took the lead and never looked back. Alexis Marquez led off with a single through the left side. With one out, Eder Hernanez Sarao drew a walk. With Nando Mostaert at bat, Marquez stole third base and scored on a shrewd play when Hernanez Sarao headed for second and deliberately let himself be caught in a run down on which Marquez could score the opening run.
With runners on first and second and one out, Edgar Nieto Castillo singled to center field to drive in Leonel Reina. Then with runners in scoring position, Alexis Marquez flied out to center field to drive in Steff Roymans.
In the fifth, a sac fly drove in Deurne’s fourth run. In the same inning, Hoboken had a golden opportunity to get back in the game when it loaded the bases with one out. Then Kelvin Delgado only hit a sac fly to drive in Benjamin Goffaux, and Xander Verspreet struck out swinging to end the inning.
In the seventh inning, Deurne scored two insurance runs on a double by Alexis Marquez.
In the bottom of the seventh, Drew Janssen scored on a sac fly but was tagged by catcher Johiner Alfonso Arguinzones Ocanto in a totally unnecessary move, as the latter didn’t have possession of the ball. If Arguinzones Ocanto’s intent was to provoke the opponent, he succeeded in doing so as the benches cleared. Eventually, Pioneers scored two more runs in the seventh, but that was all the team was capable of.
Perhaps a pivotal moment in the game was in the bottom of the ninth inning when Dennis de Quint connected for what appeared to be a home run. Instead of running down the bases to avoid a double play situation in the following at-bats, he admired his work and only ended at first base as his hit ended against the outfield fence. As a result, Kelvin Delgado hit into a game-ending double play.
Anderson Denny Gerdel Nieto earned the win as he pitched a complete game in which he allowed four runs on twelve hits and four walks and struck out eight. Kenny van den Branden took the loss. In five innings, he gave up four runs on four hits and four walks and struck out four.
With two hits out of three at-bats, Alexis Marquez was the best hitter for Deurne Spartans with a double and three RBI.
Game four of this series will be played today at Lefty’s Field in Deurne. The game will start at 14.00 (2.00 PM).
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