After beating the North Shore Titans on Saturday behind the arms of Jeff Amick and Jeremy Barchie and a total Militia hitting barrage, the Monroeville Militia stayed alive in the 2010 Pittsburgh NABA playoffs by knocking off the Allegheny AA Division Champs and 2009 Pittsburgh NABA Champion Hurricanes by a score of 6-3 in 9 innings on a sunny afternoon at Laroche College.
The Hurricanes jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning after Andrew Rafalski singled to right field to score a run. In the top of the second inning, Mark Lombardi reached on a tough play by Hurricane starting pitcher Chris Mulkerin. A Militia player then walked to have first and second for catcher Andrew Shaffer. Shaffer promptly bombed a double off of the left field wall to score two runs and give the Militia a 2-1 lead. However, in the bottom of the second inning, the Hurricanes answered with a run of their own off of Militia starting pitcher Paul Altymer to tie the game at 2-2.
The game was a battle as it stayed tied for the next 7 innings. Andrew Rafalski entered the game as pitcher for the Canes in the 5th inning after Mulkerin departed giving four solid innings of work. Ben Sorosky greeted Rafalski with a liner up the middle in the 5th but was stranded at second after the Canes RF robbed Evan Banner of a double in the gap.
A huge play for the Militia happened in the bottom of the 5th as Hurricane second baseman Matt Johnston got a great jump and tried to steal 3rd base. However, Militia second baseman Brian Andrews caught a short popup in RF and made a perfect flip to SS Jeff Amick to double off Johnston at 2B. Both Altmyer and Rafalski were dominant on the hill and pitched scoreless innings until the 9th inning.
In the top of the 9th, the Michigan Militia “Molotov cocktailed” a post office and created a ruckus as they rallied for four runs. ( Jeremy Barchie and Dan Stell shown in video)
Brian Andrews called in a Predator Missle and singled to RF to start the inning. Andrew Shaffer promptly got his third hit of the game with a line drive down the RF line to move Andrews to third. Jeremy “Stumpy” Barchie was then clutch as he called in a Harrier Airstrike with a liner to CF to give the Militia a one run lead. Smart base running got Barchie to second base after Militia elder statesman Dan Stell missed a bunt. However, Stell came up big as he called in a Nuke Attack when he doubled to the gap in LF to score both Shaffer and Barchie. The Militia tacked on an extra run in the inning to take a 6-2 lead.
That was all the cushion that Militia ace “Giant Killer” Paul Altmyer needed as he shut down the Canes in the bottom of the 9th to give the Militia a 6-3 win over the Hurricanes. Jeff Amick played all star defense at SS and Dan Stell made nice catches in CF to preserve the victory.
My respect is given to the Hurricanes as they won the Championship last year. Rafalski is by far one of the best pitchers in the NABA if not the best. They will be a force to be reckoned with again next season.
The Militia will now take on the ARCH RIVAL Ducks on Wednesday night at 9 PM at Springview. Jeremy Barchie is slated to be starting pitcher on the hill. Both teams will be well rested so it will be called the “Battle at Springview”.
The Militia is “Not Afraid”.