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Slicers Advance Past Plymouth to Play for a Sectional Crown

(Plymouth, IN) - Things did not look good for the Slicer baseball team for the first four and a half innings Saturday at the Plymouth sectional vs the host Pilgrims.  La Porte trailed 1-0 heading to the bottom of the fifth but a three run rally put them ahead 3-1 and they held on to advance to Monday night’s sectional championship against Mishawaka.


La Porte was the home team and sent Cody Ryden to the mound. The sophomore right hander worked around one out hits in both the first and second innings holding the Pilgrims scoreless. The Slicers threatened in the bottom of both innings but came up empty. In the first, Ben Dubbs had a single up the middle to lead things off and promptly stole second. After Kade Flores flew out to left for the first out, Drew Catron hit a soft liner to second. Dubbs had taken off attempting to steal third. Plymouth second baseman Ryan Jolly made the catch and stepped on second for an inning ending double play. With one out in the second, Tommy Samuelson got hit with a pitch. He moved to second on Keli Hay’s swinging bunt back to the pitcher for the second out. With Carter Moses at the plate, a Matt Manzuk pitch got away from Pilgrim catcher Koan Deon. Samuelson tried to advance to third put was thrown out ending the inning.


Plymouth took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third. Ryden walked Jolly, his only walk of the game, to start the inning. Trey Hall put down a sacrifice bunt moving Jolly to second. Cam Shively ripped a double to left center to knock in the run. Ryden got cleanup hitter Manzuk to fly to center before shortstop Flores made an outstanding sliding catch in foul territory to end the inning.


La Porte went three up and three down in the bottom of the third. Moses flew out to left then both Ryan Bruemmer and Kai Jones ripped line drives right at Pilgrim defenders. Bruemmer’s to left and Jones’ to leaping first baseman Boston Berkeypile.


Plymouth threatened in the fourth. Trey Delp singled to left and Berkeypile reached on an error putting runners at first and second with no outs. Caleb Bowling flew out to medium deep right field. Delp attempted to advance to third but Keli Hay made the throw of the year to cut him down at third. Ryden struck out Deon to end the inning.


La Porte’s tough offensive luck continued in the bottom of the fourth. Dubbs hit a hard grounder that looked like a hit up the middle. Manzuk, the pitcher, deflected the ball to shortstop Preston Wolfe who threw out Dubbs. Catron singled with two outs but was stranded when RJ Anglin was called out on strikes to end the inning.

Ryden worked around a lead off hit in the top of the fifth keep the score 1-0.


The Slicers finally caught some offensive breaks and timely hitting to score three in the bottom of the fifth. Samuelson dumped a single into center. Hay followed with a hard grounder up the middle. Shortstop Wolfe moving toward the base looked like he would be able to pick it up, step on second and turn a double play. Instead, he glanced at the runner and the ball scooted under his glove putting two on with no outs. Manzuk tried to pick Samuelson off of second and threw the ball into center field moving runners on second and third. Moses bounced out to second driving in Samuelson to tie the game. Bruemmer ripped a double to right center field to knock in Hay, then scored Dubbs’ two out base hit making it 3-1 La Porte.


Ryden and the Slicer defense took over from there. In the sixth, catcher Moses pounced on a nubber in front of the mound and made a great throw to nip Kaden Milliser at first. Delp then hit a hard grounder that third baseman Catron dove to stop, hopped up and threw him out at first. With one on a two outs, shortstop Flores charged a slow hopper and nipped Bowling at first to end the inning.

Wolfe came in to pitch the bottom of the sixth for Plymouth striking out a pair in a one, two, three inning.


Ryden gave up a one out single in the seventh before striking out Hall and getting Shively to hit into a force play to end the game.


Ryden and Bruemmer were named co Salisbury and Spence Edward Jones players of the game. Ryden pitched seven innings, gave up one run on six hits. He struck out seven and walked one. Bruemmer was 1-2, hitting the ball hard both at bats. He drove in the Slicer’s second run and scored the third. Dubbs was the only Slicer with multiple hits going 2-3 with an RBI and stolen base.


La Porte improves to 19-9 on the season. Plymouth finishes at 14-15.


Mishawaka won the first semifinal game over Michigan City 11-0 in six innings. The Cavemen and Slicers will meet on Memorial Day at 5:00 PM central time at Bill Nixon Field in Plymouth’s Centennial Park for the Sectional 3 crown.  As always, you can hear every pitch on 96.7 the Eagle, the 96.7 The Eagle La Porte app, or online at 96.7TheEagle.com.

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