Each year hundreds of Little League baseball players and fans grab their caps and head out to the old ball game for one of America’s favorite sports.
For the past three years, NCTV has sponsored a team and for the second year in a row, they are off to the playoffs.
The sun shined at Knoch Park as the NCTV Athletics and Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce Red Sox went bat to bat for the Little League playoff game.
NCTV’s own staff was in the bleachers cheering on the team.
The Athletics pulled ahead early in the game leading 2-0 after hitting two doubles in the first inning.
But soon the game turned into a nail biter as the Red Sox caught back up and the two teams battled for the lead.
In the 10-12 age group there are only six innings and by the end of the sixth they were tied 5-5 pulling the game forward into an extra inning.
Athletics batted first, quickly hitting and putting three players on base. They end up scoring and pulling ahead 6-5.
The Red Sox return at the bottom of the seventh and tie the score right back up 6-6.
With one out and a runner on third, Red Sox Dylan Schneider bunts and Joey Davis sprints to home base scoring the winning run.
“It was exciting and I was just really happy that he was able to put the bunt down. The run went really fast and it was exhilarating, it was amazing,” said Red Sox player Joey Davis.
“We never gave up and then Matt Dziekan made that big hit, but then we just couldn’t close it,” said NCTV17 Athletics player Patrick Quinlan.
“They just fought back the whole way and it’s the way our season’s been,” NCTV17 Athletics Manager Jim Mikuta said. “Most of our games this year have been very close and they’ve played so well through it.”
“Every boy on the team had an opportunity to do something today and I was really proud of every one of them,” explained Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce Red Sox Manager Tom Ullom. “Like I said I’ve been coaching for a long time and I’m proud of these boys and the effort that they put in today. Just a great win for the boys.”
Tune into NCTV17 on Sunday, July 8th at 3PM to watch the Little League championship game.
Reporting from Knoch Park, Gretchen Andsager, Naperville News 17.
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