Delco League Finals GM2: Wayne 8, Concord 1

Peiffer’s clutch hit helps Wayne even series

From the Daily Times posted 8/7/2019

By Terry Toohey ttoohey@21st-centurymedia. com @TerryToohey on Twitter

EASTTOWNTWP. >> Will Peiffer was stiff and sore from taking a pitch to the ribs in the first inning and it showed when the Wayne right fielder stepped to the plate with two on in the bottom of the third inning Tuesday evening.

The Downingtown East grad and junior-to-be at Ursinus swung and missed badly at the first two offerings from Concord starter Nate Sides, and it looked like the Canes might get out of the jam with only minimal damage.

Peiffer stepped out of the batters’ box, gathered himself and promptly turned in the at-bat of the game, and maybe the series, as Wayne rolled over Concord, 8-1, at Devon Prep to even the best-of-five Delco League championship series at one game apiece.

Peiffer laced a two-run single to right-center field on the 12th pitch of the at bat to chase home Ed Paparella and Dan Williams to give Wayne a 3-0 lead.

“I was just looking to get contact, get the barrel on the ball,” Peiffer said. “If I had to foul off as many pitches as I can, I’ll do that.”

The left-handed hitting Peiffer fouled off three straight pitches, took three balls, and fouled off three more pitches before he sent Sides’ one-out offering into the gap.

“That was the biggest part of the game, making it from 1-0 to 3-0,” Wayne manager Brian Fili said. “It was a great at-bat. It was the first at-bat after he got drilled and he has a pretty good bruise there. That changed the momentum of the game. That was really important because those guys can swing the bat.”

Two batters later Tommy Jacobs drove in Peiffer to give Wayne a 4-0 cushion after three innings, which was more than enough for starter Alden Mathes. The 2019 Daily Times Player of the Year from Marple Newtown allowed three hits, no runs and struck out six in six innings.

“That was huge,” Mathes said of Peiffer’s at-bat. “You could see him grimacing on each swing, but he hung in there. It just shows you how much of a warrior he is. He battled through pain there and got us the biggest hit of the series. If he doesn’t get a hit there, it’s only 1-0. I’m a lot more comfortable pitching with a three-run lead. I can be more aggressive and pitch around their better hitters. That way if we give up a run we still have the lead.”

The Canes could not find a way to get a runner home against Mathes. The crafty lefty gave up a leadoff triple to Ed Poduslenko in the fourth inning and stranded him there. Mathes got out of minimal trouble in the fifth and sixth innings before turning the ball over to Joe Peluso for the seventh.

“He’s really talented and a good competitor,” Wayne second baseman Dan Williams said of Mathes. “He gave us the lift we needed today. He shut them down and gave us a chance to get the offense  going.”

It took a little while to get that offense in gear after Wayne suffered its first shutout loss of the season in the 3-0 setback in Game 1, running into several outs early. Kevin Mohollen was caught stealing after  drawing a leadoff walk in the first inning. Pfeiffer was doubled off second following a line drive by Jacobs in the second inning and Matt Briner was thrown out at the plate to end the inning.

Peiffer’s hit in the third changed all that and Wayne kept the pressure on. Ed Paparella tripled home Mohollen in the fourth inning to make it 5-0. Luke Mutz and Mathes drove in one run each in a three-run outburst in the bottom of the fifth.

Peiffer and Williams finished with two RBIs each. Mathes, Paparella, Jacobs (two hits) and Mutz knocked in one run each. Briner was the only starter who failed to get a hit.

“That lineup, that’s what they did all year,” Concord manager Frank Siviski said. “They may sleep one game, but not two. If you don’t come out with energy they’re going to bury you and that’s what they did tonight.”

Chris Salvey spoiled the shutout bid when he doubled home Sides with two outs in the top of the seventh, but that wasn’t enough to keep Wayne from tying up the series.

Now the series shifts to Garnet Valley for Games 3 (Thursday at 5:45) and 4 (Saturday at 3).

“You can’t go down 2-0, it just makes it hard,” Fili said. “You have to win three in a row against a team like that and that isn’t easy. But we’re back even and we built this team with a lot of pitching depth and hopefully that will carry us through.”


NOTES >> Saviski said Ryan Johnson will get the call for the Canes in Game 3. Fili will counter with James Dougherty. … If a Game 5 is necessary it will be Sunday at Devon Prep at 2.