BY DENNIS CHASE firstname.lastname@example.org
Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — TRAVERSE CITY — Sean Mahley had no intentions of stopping at third.
The Schaumburg rightfielder was on second base with one out in the 11th inning Thursday night when Bobby Martin hit a slow dribbler to third. Traverse City’s Jose Vargas fielded the ball and threw out Martin, but Mahley raced around third and beat the throw home for the game’s only run as the Boomers edged the Beach Bums 1-0 in a pitching dominated Frontier League game at Wuerfel Park.
“I wasn’t slowing down,” Mahley said. “I knew from the get-go, from the read of the ball, I was going to score no matter what. It was a perfect opportunity for me to get in there and I took advantage of it.”
Chris Squires, who came on in relief in the 11th, was the tough-luck loser. He allowed a leadoff single to Brian McConkey — the only sharply hit ball in the inning — and then Mahley beat out a slow topper down the third base line. Ty Nelson followed by hitting a chopper to short that Taylor Wrenn grabbed and flipped to third to force McConkey. That set the stage for Martin.
“It was a battle,” Mahley said. “We were very fortunate to come out with a win.”
Both starting pitchers — Traverse City’s Johnny Omahen and Shaumburg’s Chris Phelan — tossed seven innings of shutout ball. Omahen gave up just three hits, Phelan four.
The Beach Bums had an opportunity to get on the board in the fifth when catcher Chris Cowell walked and rightfielder Sean Gusrang doubled with one out. D’Marcus Ingram lifted a short fly to center. Schaumburg’s Alexi Colon caught the ball and threw out Cowell at the plate.
In the third inning, the Boomers put their first two batters on, but the Beach Bums pulled off a triple play when Colon’s bunt attempt was snagged in the air by Omahen, who threw to second to double off Mahley. Wrenn then fired to first to nab Nelson.
Nick Capito pitched three innings of shutout ball for Traverse City. Schaumburg’s Preston Hatcher and Dexter Price combined for four perfect innings of relief. Price earned the win to improve to 3-0.
“They did enough to win, we didn’t,” Beach Bums manager Gregg Langbehn said. “We pitched well, played great defense. That’s the way it goes.”
Omahen’s effort on the mound was the highlight for the Beach Bums.
“Johnny’s bouncing back,” Langbehn said. “The last couple starts have been really encouraging. It’s where we expected him to be coming out of spring training. That’s a good sign.”
With the loss Traverse City dropped to 22-14. The Boomers went to 22-15.
“That’s a good team,” Langbehn said of Schaumburg. “They can hit.
“They’re the best team we’ve played. I assume we’ll both be there at the end of the year.”