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Fitzwater saves day for Post 202

July 02, 1998|By MIKE WOLFF

WILLIAMSPORT - J.R. Fitzwater drove in three runs - including the game winner in the 10th inning - as Williamsport Post 202 defeated Funkstown Post 211 4-3 Wednesday afternoon in American Legion baseball action.

Fitzwater was a home run away from hitting for the cycle as he singled, doubled and tripled to lead Williamsport.

Williamsport led 3-1 going into the seventh inning, but Funkstown came back with two runs, capped by an RBI single by Brad Taylor, to tie the game.

"They did a good job in coming back," said Williamsport coach Scott Jennings. "We let it slip away in the seventh inning by making some mistakes."

Williamsport took a 1-0 lead in the second when Tony West drove in Fitzwater with a single up the middle. They added two more in the third inning when Fitzwater knocked in Ryan Acre and Rusty Tritsch with a double.

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Funkstown came back with an unearned run in the sixth to bring the score to 3-1.

In addition to providing the offense for Williamsport, Fitzwater also pitched a strong game, giving up two earned runs over eight innings and striking out six.

Funkstown had two golden opportunities to take the lead in extra innings, but each time it failed to score against Phil Helser, who entered in the ninth.

In the ninth, Funkstown had the bases loaded with one out, but Taylor popped out to second base and Chris Purnell grounded out to third.

In the 10th inning, Funkstown (12-14, 8-10 Western District) again had the bases loaded with one out. Helser (2-2) struck out Zack Swisher, and was bailed out on a diving catch by Acre on a line drive off the bat of Frank Linton.

Acre's play visibly lifted Williamsport (13-13, 8-9) going into the bottom of the tenth.

Tritsch led off with a walk and put himself into scoring position by stealing second base. One out later, Fitzwater singled home Tritsch to win the game.

"We battled back in the 10th inning and showed a little intensity," Jennings said. "We have lacked that killer instinct all year, but we showed it in the 10th."

Shane Carbaugh (4-3) took the loss despite allowing just one run in the final four innings.

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