AUBURN, Mass. – The Auburn Senior League All-Stars pulled out an extra-inning nail-biter Tuesday as it moved one win away from heading to the World Series.
The 15- and 16-year-olds from Auburn defeated Upper Moreland, Pa., 4-3, after nine innings in the Senior League Eastern Regional Tournament in New Jersey. Auburn is undefeated in the weeklong tournament, and it will play for the championship Wednesday night, with a World Series bid on the line.
“It’s very exciting right now,” Manager Dalton Goodrich said. “I couldn’t ask for anything more from these kids.”
The extra-inning win was “nerve-wracking” and one of those “edge of your seats kind of games,” Goodrich said.
In the top of the ninth inning, with a runner on second and two outs, Upper Moreland’s third baseman committed a throwing error. The ball skipped past the first baseman and went into the dugout, allowing Auburn’s Lincoln Bois to score the winning run.
Before the extra innings, Auburn had taken a 3-0 lead in the fourth inning on a throwing error, a successful double steal of home and an RBI single by Ryan Kozlowski.
Upper Moreland got on the board in the fourth with a solo homer to left and then tied the game in the fifth on a wild pitch.
The game remained tied until the ninth inning, when Auburn went ahead for good. Tyler Desjardins earned the win in relief for Auburn, shutting down an Upper Moreland rally in the sixth and hurling 3-1/3 innings of no-hit relief.
With one more win, Auburn would advance to the World Series in Bangor, Maine. Teams from across the country and world compete at the tournament.
“For the kids, it would mean everything if we could get there,” Goodrich said. “We just need to keep doing what we’ve been doing on offense, defense and pitching, and we’ll get there.”
Joshua Boucher, who hasn’t pitched in the tournament, will start in Auburn’s next game.
“Josh is fresh and ready to go,” Goodrich said. “We’ve been saving him for the right time, and this upcoming game would be the right time.”
In Wednesday’s game at 5 p.m., Auburn will face Upper Moreland or West Deptford, N.J., two teams Auburn has already beaten in the tournament.
Come back to The Daily Voice to find out whether Auburn won the tournament and advanced to the World Series.