Photo by Chet Strange/The American Legion
Delaware, Louisiana, Michigan and Nevada will vie for a chance at the title.
By Andy Proffet
A five-run fifth inning that saw Randolph County (N.C.) Post 45 draw four straight walks with the bases loaded was enough for Randolph County to pick up their first win of the 2018 American Legion World Series.
The 10-6 victory over Las Vegas Post 40 in the early hours of Monday wasn’t enough, however, to extend Randolph County’s season.
Randolph County’s win left them, Las Vegas and Meridian (Idaho) Post 113 all with 1-2 records in the Stars Division at the end of pool play. The first tiebreaker for such a three-way tie is fewest runs allowed, which eliminated Meridian (19 runs allowed) first.
But Randolph County needed to outscore Las Vegas by 11 runs or more to win the tiebreaker in that category. Instead, it will be Las Vegas advancing to the semifinals against Stripes Division winner Gonzales (La.) Post 81.
Randolph County’s big fifth inning started off inauspiciously as the first two batters struck out. But Trevor Marsh hit a two-out double, Austin Curry drew a walk, and Spencer Lanier singled to score Marsh.
Braxton Davis walked to load the bases, then Blake Marsh drew a walk to score Curry to cut Las Vegas’ lead to 6-5. That, and the pitch count limit, ended the night on the mound for Chaison Miklich.
Reliever Zach Czerniawski then walked all three batters he faced to put Randolph County ahead 8-6. Colby Smith came on in relief to get the final out.
Randolph County took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning when Tristan Marsh scored on as Landon Smith reached on a fielder’s choice.
The game was delayed after one out in the bottom of the first by lightning and rain, with the game finally resuming at 10 p.m.
Las Vegas tied the game 1-1 in the bottom of the first. Chaison Miklich singled to drive in Edarian Williams. Las Vegas would load the bases after that but fail to score.
In the bottom of the second, Williams — who had tripled in his first at-bat — doubled to drive in Colby Smith and Jason Sharman to make it 3-1.
Randolph County tied the game 3-3 in the top of the third, when Landon Smith’s double drove in Tristan Marsh and Dawson Painter.
Las Vegas took the lead again in the bottom of the fourth. Williams’ sac fly scored Jordan DeMarce, then Aaron Roberts doubled with two out to score Sharman and Parker Schmidt.
Randolph County added insurance runs in the top of the sixth and seventh.
Monday’s semifinal games
Game 13: Midland (Mich.) Post 165 (47-9) vs. Wilmington (Del.) Post 1 (36-4), 4 p.m.
Midland won the Stars Division with a 3-0 record in pool play, outscoring the opposition 15-6. Midland reached the ALWS in 2017 but finished 1-2 and lost a three-way tiebreaker. Post 165 was also the last team from Michigan to win the ALWS, in 2009 in Fargo, N.D. … Wilmington finished second in the Stripes Division with a 2-1 record in pool play, outscoring the opposition 11-8. This Delaware team is the first in the ALWS since 1976 and the first to win a game since 1967. No Delaware team has ever won the ALWS title.
Game 14: Gonzales (La.) Post 81 (44-6) vs. Las Vegas Post 40 (49-16), 7 p.m.
Gonzales won the Stripes Division with a 3-0 record in pool play, outscoring the opposition 9-6. The last team from Louisiana to win the ALWS was New Orleans Post 125 in 2012 in Shelby. … Las Vegas won a tiebreaker to finish second in the Stars Division with a 1-2 record, outscoring the opposition 18-13. Last year’s ALWS champions represented Nevada Post 40 with players from Henderson High School; this year’s squad is made up primarily of players from Desert Oasis High School.
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