OSWEGO — Malia Upcraft delivered heroics for the sixth-seeded Vona’s in the sixth inning as they topped the third-seeded Firefighters, 16-14, in the opening round of the Oswego Little League Majors Division playoffs on Friday.
In the top of the sixth inning, Upcraft drove in Aiden DeSantis and Jack Wallace on a single. Upcraft moved to second base on the throw.
Upcraft came through in the clutch once again in the bottom half of the sixth. With one out in the inning, Upcraft caught a line drive then caught off the runner at second for the double play to secure the win for Vona’s.
Alex Taylor collected two singles and scored three times for Vona’s. Wallace had two singles and scored two runs, while DeSantis scored twice, singled and walked. Gabe Cook walked three times and scored twice, and Luis Colon-Molina chipped in three singles, stole three bases and scored twice.
Zach Truell started on the mound for Vona’s. Colon-Molina, Oly Hoefer, and Cook pitched in relief.
Eddie Kuzawski singled, scored twice, drove in a run and stole a base for the Firefighters. Nolan Connors singled two times, walked and scored three runs. Jack Haynes doubled, tripled and knocked in a run. Carter Guynn singled, doubled and scored twice. Jason Bartlett (two singles, two runs scored), Matt Willis (single, two runs scored) and Nico Canale (two walks, two runs scoered) also contributed their efforts for the Firefighters.
Guynn started on the bump for the Firefighters. Connors and Kuzawski pitched as well.
Vona’s and the Firefighters were tied at 2-2 after two innings. Vona’s then plated five runs in the top of the third to take a 7-2 lead. The Firefighters fought back with a seven-run explosion in the bottom of the fourth to give it a 9-7 advantage.
The Firefighters stormed for more runs in the bottom of the fifth. Their offensive production ended with a five-run frenzy, which bulked their cushion to 14-7.
Vona’s answered back quick in the top of the sixth with a nine-run come-from-behind effort, including Upcraft’s two-run go-ahead base hit.
The matchups for the semifinal round are set. Vona’s takes on top-seeded Elks on Wednesday, July 10. Fifth-seeded Bosco’s goes up against the second-seeded Lighthouse Lanes on Tuesday, July 9.
Oswego Little League Majors Division Playoffs
5-Bosco’s 22, 4-Police 3
6-Vona’s 16, 3-Firefighters 14
Tuesday, July 9
2-Lighthouse Lanes vs. 5-Bosco’s
Wednesday, July 10
1-Elks vs. 6-Vona’s
Championship Round (Best-of-3)
Game 1: Monday, July 22
Game 2: Tuesday, July 23
Game 3 (if necessary): Thursday, July 25