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Cardinals bats explode in 9-1 triumph

July 31, 2014 – 08:39 PM

Whereas hits were as scarce as hens teeth Wednesday, the Cards made their bats come to life Thursday evening as they got to three New Cumberland pitchers for 11 hits on the way to a 9-1 victory and a 2-1 lead the West Shore Twilight League playoffs.

It made a winner of Jeff Allen who scattered four hits in an outstanding performance during which he walked only one batter and struck out seven. He only blemish was a solo homer by Joe Murphy in the first inning as the Tiger enjoyed a brief lead.

The Cards responded with a pair runs in the bottom of the first. It started with singles by Quinn Bower and Elliot Searer. After a force play, Joe DeBernardis singled to load the bases. Blaine Bower followed with a base hit to right chasing the two runs home.

Three more crossed in the third on the strength of singles by DeBernardis, Blaine Bower, Teed Wertz and Ben Eppley plus a costly error and a wild pitch. Searer's two-run homer over the fence near the score board highlighted a four-run fourth. Two walks, a hit batter, and an rbi single by Matt Osenbach and a fielder's choice led to the final two runs.

Quinn Bower, Searer, DeBernardis and Blaine Bower  each were 2-for-3 for the Cards with Searer, Jake Warner and DeBernardis each scoring twice.

The Cardinals will attempt to take 3-1 edge in the best-of-seven series Friday at New Cumberland at 5:45 p.m.


Tigers rally late for 2-1 decision

July 30, 2014 – 08:15 PM

Brett Wagner had things his own way for four innings, facing the minimum number of batters. It all changed in the fifth when the New Cumberland Tigers managed to push two runs across and held on to gain a 2-1 nod over the Cardinals Wednesday evening at New Cumberland.

As a result the West Shore Twilight League first round playoff is even at a game a piece. The teams square off in game three Thursday at Rickenbach-Shirley Field at 5:45 p.m.

It was the Cardinals who drew first blood in this one, netting their only run off Vince Malesky in the first inning. Blaine Bower, who got new life when third baseman Joe Gagliardi dropped his foul popup for an error, drilled a one-out single to center, took second as Wagner grounded out and romped home when Joe DeBernardis punched a hit into center.

Jake Warner singled leading off the second but was stranded. The same with Quinn Bower who was hit by a pitch and stole second but was left there in the third frame..

Meanwhile Wagner retired the first six he faced. Brad Medellin ended the string when he singled leading off the third. He was sacrificed to second but was picked off when Dylan Zigman lined right into the glove of Wagner who wheeled and fired to second for the double play.

Miles Campbell walked with two out in the fourth but was promptly thrown out trying to steal, Matt Osenbach to Warner. Then came the fifth. Joe Murphy drew a lead off walk and circled the bases when Will Enrico drilled a fly to deep right. Brayden Lackey tried to make a diving catch but the ball went by and Enrico ended up at second. Wagner retired the next two batters with Enrico getting to third, but pinchhitter Jordan McClure grounded a singled into left field and Enrico scored what turned out to be the winning run.

Wagner gave up only three hits and a couple of walks while fanning four. Malesky allowed four hits and two walks with six strikeouts.

DeBernardis, Miller pace Cards in playoff opener

July 29, 2014 – 09:25 PM

Joe DeBernardis drove in two runs and scored a pair to back Travis Miller's pitching and the Cardinals pinned a 5-3 setback on the New Cumberland Tigers in the West Shore Twilight League playoff opener Tuesday evening at Rickenbach-Shirley Field.

Game two is Wednesday at New Cumberland at 5:45 p.m.

First to get on the board were the Cardinals who struck in the second when DeBernardis and Elliot Searer both singled. Matt Osenbach lined a single to center driving in DeBernardis.

The Tigers countered in the third when Dylan Zigman singled, stole second and rode home on Stephen McKee's double to right. The Cards, however, came right back in the bottom of the third to take the lead for good. Blaine Bower and Brett Wagner both singled. DeBernardis grounded into a fielder's choice forcing Wagner and allowing Bower to go to third and he kept on going when the relay on the fielder's choice sailed out of play.

The score stayed at 2-1 until the fifth when the Cardinals put three tallies on the board. It started with a leadoff single by Quinn Bower and a walk to Blaine Bower. Both runners breezed home on a triple to deep right center by DeBernardis who moments later raced home on a wild pitch.

It got a little scary when the Tigers scored twice in the sixth. Sam Sorenson singled and Joe Murphy was hit by a pitch. Will Enrico's hit loaded the bases and Jordan Lawson's  sacrifice fly scored Sorenson. Murphy scored on a wild pitch. Miller fanned Logan Sica to end the threat. After a leadoff single in the seventh, Miller retired the side in order to end the game.

The victory was number 2,651 for Cards skipper Bill Rickenbach who established national semi-pro base record for a manager. The old mark was 2,650 held by a manager in Indiana whose name was not readily available from the  National Semi Pro Baseball Association and Hall of Fame.

Cards drop pair, finish second.

July 26, 2014 – 05:10 PM

With no pitchers available, Bill Rickenbach went to fielders for bodies to take the mound Saturday. They pitched well but the hitting slump was still there although improving slightly. The end result was two defeats at the hands of Central Penn, 2-1 and 6-5.

With the longest losing streak--three games--in many years, the Cardinals reliquished the West Shore Twilight League to Cumberland and fell to second place. They will opening the first round of playoffs against New Cumberland Monday at Rickenbach-Shirley Field at 5:45 p.m.

Teed Wertz pitched well enough to win in the first game and most likely gained a spot in the starting rotation for the playoffs. He had one tough inning, the third, when the Orioles scored both runs. A leadoff walk to Rob Thompson, a one-out single by Anthony Salamone and a hit batter loaded the bases. Kris Aumiller hit into a fielder's choice scoring Thompson. Karl Aumiller singled scoring Salamone.

The Cardinals finally got on the board in the sixth. Elliot Searer singled, took second when Joe DeBernardis was hit by a pitch and scored on Jeff Allen's single to left center. That was as far as they would go. Brayden Lackey walked  with one out in the seventh but was stranded.

The teams agreed to stay at Creekview Park for the second game with Mechanicsburg as the home team.

Searer took the mound and shut the Orioles down in the first two innings then ran into a snag in the third. Chad Bronson singled and toured the bases when Kris Aumiller tripled. Karl Aumiller's single chased Kris home.

The Cardinals immediately tied the score in the bottom of the third. A single by Quinn Bower, a walk to DeBernardis and a wild pitch set the stage for Osenbach to loop a single to right scoring Bower. Wertz dropped a sacrifice bunt driving DeBernardis home.

Five successive hits, including a triple and double gave the Orioles a 5-2 lead in the fifth. But the Cardinals came back with three runs with two out in the last half of the sixth to again tie the score. Lackey singled and raced around the bases as Bower turned a shot to the fence in  deep right center in to an inside the park home run. Searer was hit by a pitch and DeBernardis singled. Osenbach punched a base hit to left center plating Searer.

Unfortunately the rally died there and the Orioles were bound to take the lead again in the top of the seventh. Lackey, who took over for Searer, breezed through the sixth but was touched for the deciding run in the seventh. It was a one-out fielder's choice that sent Kris Aumiller, who had singled, in with the go ahead run.

The side went in order in the bottom of the seventh. Now the Cardinals could start concentrating on the playoffs.


Second loss in three games stuns Cardinals

July 25, 2014 – 08:59 PM

Things are getting difficult for the Cardinals who now find themselves struggling to hold on to the West Shore Twilight League lead. They suffered their second loss of the week to go along with one win and a playover tie.

This time it was the lowly Shippensburg Stars who took the Cards to task. Behind the four-hit pitching of Andrew Koser and some shoddy Cardinals defense the Stars blanked their opponents, 2-0, Friday evening at Shippensburg's Memorial Park.

It also spoiled a great pitching performance by Jeff Allen who deserved a much better fate in this one. It was the fourth inning when  the Stars took the lead. Singles by Kyle Helm and Todd Melisauskas put runners at first and second. After fanning Trevor Shauf, Allen got Patrick Davis to pop up to shallow left field. Three defenders converged on the ball and in the confusion the ball bounced off the glove of Travis Miller, who was filling in for Blaine Bower in left. The error allowed Helm to score and the Stars never looked back.

The host club locked it up in the sixth thanks to another weird play. After Melisauskas tripled to deep left center, Patrick Davis popped up in tne infield and no one could reach it. It was 2-0 and that's where it stayed.

The Cards had runners at first and third with one out in the first but a double play killed the rally. Allen ripped a one-out single in the third. He was forced by Brayden Lackey who then stole second only to be stranded when Bower looked at a third strike.

Lackey singled and Bower walked with one out in the sixth but a pair of infield outs ended the inning. Miller singled with one  gone in the seventh but he too was left standing first.

Saturday the league is forcing the Cardinals to make up Thurday's tie with Central Penn at 10 a.m. at Creekview. The two teams will then travel to Rickenbach-Shirley Field to play at 1 p.m. The Cards need to win both games to take the regular season title.

Early struggle to late rally for tie

July 24, 2014 – 09:27 PM

While the Cardinals' bats were asleep, the Central Penn Orioles got to Brett Wagner for four early runs then had to fight several rallies before having to settle for a 4-4 tie Thursday Evening at Creekview Park. Darkness caused the game to be called after eight innings.

It was not a typical game for Wagner in the early going. He was touched for nine hits over the first three innings when the Orioles plated all of their runs. Thereafter Wagner was in control, blanking his opponents over the final five innings on three hits and a walk. He retired eight on strikes.

After four innings during which they managed only one hit and two baserunners, the Cardinals finally came to life in the fifth. It started with a walk to Ben Eppley who moved to second on a hit by Matt Osenbach. A fielder's choice by Brayden Lackey moved Eppley to third and a chance for Wagner to help his cause. He did just that driving the first pitch into right field for a single scoring Eppley.

An inning later it became a 4-3 game. With one out Elliot Searer reached on an error and scooted around to third on a hit to right by Eppley. Osenbach also was safe on an error allowing Searer to score. With two gone Wagner ripped a single up the middle plating Eppley making it a one-run game.

In the seventh Blaine Bower led off with a single and stole second. Teed Wertz was hit by a pitch. Joe DeBernardis slapped a single to right. Bower tried to score on the play but was thrown out at the plate. A wild pitch moved the two runner up a base. Searer singled to center chasing  Wertz home with the tying run.

With two down in the eighth Quinn Bower reached on an error and stole second. Blaine Bower walkd but Wertz flied out to center to end the threat. The Orioles went in order in the bottom of the eighth.

The road trip continues Friday evening at Shippensburg's Memorial Park at 6 p.m . The Cardinals host Central Penn Saturday at Rickenbach-Shirley Field at 1 p.m.

Cardinals beat rain and Tigers

July 23, 2014 – 09:32 PM

The combination of rain, thunder, lightning and the New Cumberland Tigers could not stop the Cardinals Wednesday evening. Tight defense, timely hitting and good pitching carried the Cards to a 6-1 triumph at New Cumberland.

Tom Heenan made the start on the mound and, after yielding a first inning run on a walk, hit batter, sacrifice bunt and sacrifice fly, allowed only three hits while blanking his opponents the rest of the way in a contest that was called after six innings due to darkness.

Meanwhile the offense was a little slow getting started but the Bower boys took care of that in the third inning. Quinn was hit by a pitch for the second straight at bat. Blaine followed and promptly smashed the first offering far over the leftfielder's head and proceeded to chase his brother around the bases for a home run giving the Cards a 2-1 lead.

Two innings later they locked up their 26th win with a four-run effort. This time Joe DeBernardis and Elliot Searer got it started. DeBernardis was hit in the back with a pitch then made a successful steal of second base. Searer rapped a single into center scoring DeBernardis. Not about to done in by the previous base stealer, Searer pulled off the same stunt then scored on Matt Osenbach's hit to center. Osenbach was caught in a rundown on the play for the first out.

Following a change of pitchers Ben Eppley walked, took second on Brayden Lackey's single to left center and crossed the plate on Travis Miller's smash to left center with Lackey going to third. Quinn Bower lofted a single to right sending Lackey home.

After the Cardinals went in order in the sixth, the Tigers looked like they might get something started when  Joe Kidd was hit by a pitch and moved to second on a fielder's choice. That's as far as he would go as Osenbach picked him off second base. After Heenan issued a two-out walk, he got Dylan Zigman  to fly out to Quinn Bower in center.

The game was called moments later.

The Cardinals travel to Creekview Park to take on Central Penn Thursday at 6 p.m.



Win streak ends in 4-2 setback

July 22, 2014 – 09:13 PM

It wasn't vintage Cardinals baseball Tuesday evening. Defense slipped with three errors that produced three unearned runs, bats that were silent much of the game and a rare off night for Travis Miller.

The result was the end of a winning streak that reached 18 games. The Cumberland Dodgers managed to take advantage of the Cardinals problems in the first three innings then held on take a 4-2 decision at Boiling Springs High School.

The only earned run the Dodgers got came in the first inning when Jimmy Baum led off with a walk, was sacrifice to second by Tyler Weary and romped home on a double by Jared Frey.

The rest of it was pretty much given to the Dodgers. They loaded the bases on a hit, walk and error with one out. That was followed by sac fly by Baum which would have been the third out. Two runs crossed in the third with the benefit of two Cardinal errors, a walk and two hits.

Miller had trouble in the fourth. A walk, a hit and a stolen base put runners at second and third but a pair of ground balls to Jake Warner ended the inning. The fifth and sixth saw the side go in order.

The Cards put a scare into the opposition with a bit of two out lightning in the fifth inning. It started with a walk to Brayden Lackey and a single to left by Ben Eppley. Both runners moved up on a wild pitch before Quinn Bower drilled a double to the alley in right center driving in both runners.

The road trip continues Wednesday when the Cards travel to New Cumberland to meet the third place Tigers in a 6 p.m. contest.

Pair of 3-0 shutouts keep Cardinals' streak alive

July 19, 2014 – 05:25 PM

Jeff Allen and Vince Apicello turned in shutout efforts to lead the Cardinals over Fayetteville by identical 3-0 scores Saturday afternoon at Rickenbach-Shirley Field.

Allen, who won a game in the preseason Hagerstown Tournament, was making his first regular season start in the opener and logged a stellar performance. He scattered three singles and two walks. He allowed only one runner as far as third base. His teammates played good defense behind him.

In the second game, Apicello ran his season record to 6-0 and lowered his earned run average to 1.71, just a tad above the team era of 1.62. He gave up two hits and two walks while not allowing a runner beyond second base. He struck out 10.

The Cards did not produce a lot of hits during the twin bill, notching six in each game. But there were some really key spots that helped put runs on the new scoreboard.

In the first inning of the early game Quinn Bower led off with a single to left, moved around to the hot corner when brother Blaine and Elliot Searer walked and scored on Matt Osenbach's sacrifice fly. An inning later Travis Miller, the designated hitter, led off with a single and was advanced by Brayden Lackey's sacrifice. After taking third as Ben Eppley grounded out, Miller scored when Quinn Bower doubled to right center.

An insurance tally crossed the plate in the sixth when Eppley slashed a single to right and raced all the way around the bases on Quinn Bower's second double of the game.

Of the six hits in game one, Quinn had four of them, two singles and a pair of doubles.  He scored one run and drive in two.

Quinn continued his hitting in the nightcap with a single and double in three trips, a 6-for-7 day. He started it off in the opening frame with another single to left. He stole second and continued to third when the pitcher's pickoff throw sailed over the second baseman's head. A Joe DeBernardis hit to right chased Quinn home with the first run.

There was little offense after that as Fayetteville's Jonathon Brown bore down and retired 10 in a row before Teed Wertz singled leading off the fifth. The Cards got to Brown in the sixth for their final two runs.  A leadoff double by Quinn Bower was followed by rbi singles  by Blaine Bower and Elliot Searer.

Moving into the final week of the regular season, the Cardinals have five games to play. They start Tuesday against Cumberland at Boiling Springs High School,  continue Wednesday at New Cumberland, Thursday at Central Penn, Friday at Shippensburg and finish at home Saturday against Central Penn.


12-run inning boosts Cardinals

July 17, 2014 – 09:24 PM

Teed Wertz had two hits and drove in a pair of runs in a big 12-run third inning and the Cardinals went to pin a 14-0 defeat on the Shippensburg Stars Thursday evening at Shippensburg's Memorial Park.

In all the Cards used seven hits, including a double by Quinn Bower, four  walks and three Shippensburg errors to get the job done in the third. Others getting hits in the rally were Brayden Lackey, Brett Wagner, Matt Osenbach and Blaine Bower.  Blaine Bower and Lackey also drove in two runs, a piece. Elliot Searer drew a pair of walks.

The Cards scored their first run in the first inning when Blaine Bower singled, then went to second on a fielder's choice, to third on an error and rode home on a hit by Wertz. The final run crossed the plate in the fifth when Blaine's long drive to left center was booted for a three base error. He scored when Searer grounded out to third.

These efforts made Wagner's work on the mound a tad simpler. He allowed only three hits, did not give up a walk and struck out eight. Three errors made thing a little difficult for him but he made strikeouts work for them for them. He struck out eight along the way and did not give up a walk.

Next up for the Cardinals is a doubleheader with Fayetteville Saturday afternoon at Rickenbach-Shirley Field starting a 1 p. m.

Game results listed

June 4, 2014 – 03:54 PM

To check box score, click on Game Results on the left side of page and click on the game shown in the list. Click on the arrow then click on West Shore Twilight League 2014

Roster and Schedule listed

May 16, 2014 – 04:22 PM

The 2014 Cardinals roster and schedule are on the website.

The roster can be reached by clicking on Players on the left side of the site, click on West Shore Twilight 2014 for the league list. Scroll down the list and click on Mechanicsburg.

For the schedule click on Schedules, click on West Twilight 2014 for the league list. Scroll down the list and click on Mechanicsburg.

The 2014 schedules will be filed later individually as received.

Locate team's league statistics

June 2, 2012 – 11:58 AM

The team's stats in league games can be found by clicking on "Teams/Rosters on the left side of the screen. Then click on West Shore Twilight League 2012, then click on Mechanicsburg. Hitting and pitching stats are included.

Mechanicsburg Cardinals, perennial West Shore Twilight League Playoff Champs