The Del Val league doesn’t exactly have the most sterling reputation as a baseball league these days. Game days like last Thursday in which the six teams combined to commit 30-some errors certainly don’t help.
With the reclassification of Interboro to Class AAA, the big-school District One Tournament will proceed without a Del Val team this year (only Penn Wood and Chester are AAAA, and neither will have the record to qualify as an at large with the auto bid stripped). And the view of most locals on the deterioration of the Del Val in sports that are not basketball is, well let’s not go into that.
But that didn’t stop the league from producing three outstanding games Tuesday night (probably all because I chose to cover an Inter Ac game).
Where to begin? How about Chichester delivering Interboro its first loss of the season after holding off a furious seventh-inning rally? Or Glen Mills denying Chester its first win of the season in a 14-13 barn burner? Or Academy Park needing 9 innings to get by Penn Wood? We didn’t have enough room in print to do each game justice, so here’s a little more ink.
Let’s start at the top. Interboro and Chichester battled for league supremacy last year; with each team trying to fill the role of ace after graduations a season ago, games like Tuesday’s 10-9 decision seemed likely. The Eagles got to Interboro No. 1 Sean Menold, saddling him with the loss and 10 earned runs on 12 hits in 31/3 innings. Brian Baldwin tripled, drove in three and had three hits, Danny Lauser had three hits, including a homer, and two RBIs, and Corbyn Nyemah drove in two.
But the Bucs eventually turned on the offense after Demetrius Muse held them down early. Muse, knocked around in the previous meeting, worked around seven walks to give up three runs, none of them earned, in four-plus innings to pick up his third win of the season. With the Bucs threatening in the top of the seventh and pushing five runs across, Lauser came on to shut the door. He walked three, but got the two outs he needed for the save.
Pat Cashin and Josh Kohlbrenner drove in two runs each for Interboro, which only had five hits.
Academy Park needed extras to dispatch of Penn Wood, 6-5. Billy Fallon got the win on the mound and also got the game-winning hit in a game where neither team scored more than two runs in any inning. Billy Brown and Craig Johnson each tripled for AP.
Kevin Gales went 4-for-5 for Penn Wood.
And then there’s Glen Mills vs. Chester. A Chester team that had only scored five runs in its first five games exploded for 13, even if it was aided by a Glen Mills team prone to walking a lot of hitters.
Glen Mills ended up on the right side of the final ledger, Jonathan Galentine surviving as much as winning on the mound. Tavon White continued his hot start to the season with two hits, including a double, four stolen bases, three runs and two RBIs, while Kaleel Hengeveld doubled among his two hits.
It wasn’t for lack of effort for Chester. Pete Hartshon, who was saddled with the loss, threw 155 pitches; he helped his cause at the dish with two hits and two RBIs.