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July 12, 2011 > Niles downs Mission San Jose to capture D14 Major title

Niles downs Mission San Jose to capture D14 Major title

Submitted By Ed Hugo

After battling back through the elimination bracket to get to the championship game, Mission San Jose (MSJ) fell to Niles Centerville in a see-saw battle 10-5.

Niles jumped to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning when the first two batters walked, advanced on steals, and were driven home by timely contact by Sam Braun and Matt Brown. In the bottom half of the frame, Mission shortstop Mark Gaffey led off by driving the first pitch over the fence in left center. Mission tallied three more runs in the inning on three walks and three singles to build a 4-2 lead.

After a scoreless second, Niles evened the score at 4-4 on two walks and a clutch single by Matthew Leung. In the bottom half, Mission threatened with runners at second and third, but Niles pitcher Erik Bernard worked out of the inning.

In the fourth, Mission second baseman Kyle Dean stroked a two out homer to left off Bernard for a 5-4 lead. After Niles pulled even in the fifth on a hit and RBI by Devin Duran, the game went to the final frame tied 5-5. In the top of the sixth, Niles tallied five runs, highlighted by a two run double by Alejandro Lemus and a two run homer by Jesse Olivera.

Kyle Dean led the MSJ offense by knocking out four hits in four plate appearances and Ryan King also had a multi-hit game banging out two hits.

With the win, Niles Centerville advance to represent District 14 in the Section 3 tournament and will face off against the District 45 champions on Saturday, July 16, at 2 p.m. at Osage Park in Danville.

Mission San Jose reached the finals by topping Newark American 13-5 when they squared off at Niles-Centerville on Thursday, July 7.

Newark American struck early, scoring four times on two home runs and two doubles in the top of the first inning. But Mission never gave up, sending eight batters to the plate and scoring three runs on three hits in the bottom of the first, leaving the score 4-3 in what started as a nail-biter.

Mission's Kyle Dean shut NALL down in the top of the second. With Mission runners at second and third, Cierra Facha blasted a homer that hit the top of the right field fence and went out as Mission scored six more in the bottom of the second to lead 9-4.

In the third, Dean continued to sail with the help of a neat inning ending double play by third baseman Mike Pyle. Mission struck again in the bottom of the third inning on a two-run four bagger by Kevin Zhangzou. Mission added two more runs in the fifth to build their lead to 13-5 before Dean closed out the game in the sixth inning.

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