Concord 4, Upper Darby 3

Saviski sparks Concord to victory

By Harry Chaykun

   Frank Saviski, the player/manager of the Concord Canes, planned to change the look of his team’s uniforms as the Canes returned to the Delco League for the 2019 season after taking 2018 off.

   “I wanted these colors for the beginning of the season,” Saviski said of the green jerseys the Concord players wore for the first time when they played their semifinal matchup against the Upper Darby Blue Sox at Kerr Field Thursday night.

   “There are so many teams in this league that wear colors like blue or red. We decided to go with this different color now that we’re in the playoffs. You can bet you’ll be seeing them again Saturday.”

   The Canes, who won the opening game of the series then lost Game 2, rallied for two runs in the top of the sixth inning and claimed a 4-3 victory over the Blue Sox Thursday night.

   Concord can close out the set with a victory Saturday in a game that will be played at Kerr Field beginning at 1 p.m. An Upper Darby victory would force a deciding fifth game at Garnet Valley High Sunday.

   In addition to having a major say in how his team would be dressed Thursday night, Saviski played a key role in leading the Canes to victory. He hit a solo home run leading off the top of the second inning and added a run-scoring double in the sixth to break a 2-2 tie. In the seventh, he replaced winning pitcher Brad Scull on the mound and set down the Blue Sox in order to earn the save.

   “Just doing what it takes to win the game,” the grandson of the late Frank Saviski, who helped Tinicum A.C. win five consecutive Delco League playoff titles in the early 1970s, said.

   Saviski came to bat for the first time expecting Upper Darby starter Brian Pazulski to throw certain pitches.

   “I was trying to sit on an off-speed pitch,” he said. “Then he threw a fastball up and in and I got a good swing on it.”

   Johnny DiMucci doubled and Joe Poduslenko followed with a single to start the third inning, giving the Canes a 2-0 lead. Concord starter Brad Johnson gave up two hits and struck out three in the first three innings.

   “He was tough out there,” Saviski said. “I just wanted to get four innings out of him. His arm got tired and they scored twice on him, but he made it through the fourth, and Brad Scull was ready to roll.”

   After Saviski’s big hit in the sixth – “with two outs I just went with the pitch,” he said – Matt Maul doubled to right field to plate the fourth Canes run.

   “With two strikes, I was just trying to do something to get Frank in,” Maul, the former Malvern Prep and Saint Joseph’s University player who arrived at Kerr Field from his job in Radnor shortly after the game got under way, said.

   A single by Tyler O’Shea and Max Anastasio’s double got the first run home for the Blue Sox in the fourth inning. Anastasio scored on a two-out single by Noah White, who added a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the sixth.

   Scull, who earned the decision in the opening game of the series, gave up two hits and struck out three in two innings to pick up another victory.

   “I’ve been to the semifinals four times and have never won a Game 5,” Saviski said. “I’m happy we’ve won two games, but I have a lot of respect for Upper Darby’s lineup. We’ll see what we can do when we come back up here Saturday.”