Cartel Stuns Anchor Dive 19-18 on Lee Lings Two-Run Homer

Dec. 8, 2006 — In probably the most exciting game of the Bob Owens slow-pitch softball leagues season, the Cartel stunned Anchor Dive 19-18 Thursday when their light-hitting ace pitcher, Troy Lee Ling, stroked a game-winning, two-run, walk-off home run.
Cartel entered the final inning at the DC Canegata Ballpark trailing by three runs, 18-15. But first Sylvester McIntosh hit a two-run shot to bring them to within one at 18-17, then Lee Lings blast sealed the deal. Lee Ling also picked up the victory on the mound for the Cartel, while Allan Woods took the loss for Anchor Dive.
Top hitters for the Cartel were Rocky Belardo, who went 2 for 3 with two home runs and four RBIs; Kenneth Milligan 2-3, one home run and three RBIs; and Lee Ling, who helped his own cause by going 2-3 with a home run and two RBIs. For Anchor Dive, Craig Swartz went 4-4 with a home run and three RBIs, while Mario Simmonds was 3-3 with two home runs and four RBIs.
Batting first, Anchor Dive blasted out of the gates, putting six runs on the board right away. Anchor Dives early runs came via a three-run home run by Fernando Irizarry, a two-run shot by Danny Rodriguez and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Joe Phillips. The Cartel, however, answered in a big way as they erupted for 10 runs in the bottom of the inning to erase Anchor Dives short-lived lead. They scored on RBI singles by Cantibol Encarnacion and Ray Defraitas, three-run home runs by Rocky Belardo and Kenneth Milligan and a two-run double off the bat of Kenneth Dunkirk to lead 10-6 after one inning.
Anchor Dive retook the lead at 12-10 in the top of the second inning with their second consecutive six-run inning. Those runs came via a three-run shot by Mario Simmomds, a solo shot by Edwin Derweer, an RBI double by Craig Swartz and an RBI by Rodriguez. Once again the lead proved short-lived as the Cartel came up with three runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 13-12 lead on a two-run blast off the bat of Rocky Belardo and an RBI single by Joseph Hodge.
A solo shot in the top of the third by Anchor Dives Phillips tied the game at 13 going into the fourth as the Cartel failed to score in the bottom of the third inning.
Anchor Dive scored their last runs of the game in the top of the fourth when they plated five runs on a three-run shot by Simmonds and a two-run single by Swartz to take an 18-13 lead. Cartel was able to close to within three runs at 18-15 when they scored two runs in the bottom of the inning on RBI singles by Dunkirk and Milligan.
This set the stage for Lee Lings late-inning heroics in the bottom of the fifth. Both teams came to the fifth knowing that, because of time constraints, it would be their last at bat. After Anchor Dive came up empty in the top of the inning, the Cartel came to bat in the bottom of the inning facing a three run deficit at 18-15.
After Anchor Dive's pitcher, Woods, walked Belardo to pitch to McIntosh, McIntosh made him pay by disposing of the first pitch he saw high and deep into the Christiansted night, over the right-field fence for a two-run homer. This made the score 18-17. With two outs later in the inning, Wood walked another hitter so he could face Cartels light-hitting pitcher, Lee Ling, in hopes of getting the final out. But Lee Ling had other ideas as he dispatched a 2-2 pitch from Woods over the left center-field fence for a game-winning two-run homer, to the delight of his teammates and their fans.

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