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GWA wins Pennsylvania Senior title

Open Eastern Regional in New Jersey with 7-3 win

The Greater Wyoming Area Senior All-Star team won the Pennsylvania State Title on Monday at the Cameron County Little League in Emporium.

GWA pitcher Adam Romanowski delivers to the plate against New Jersey in the Little League Senior Baseball Eastern Regional on Friday night.

photo courtesy of Nick perugini

Greater Wyoming Area rode the hitting of Trent Grove to win the Pennsylvania Senior Little League Championships with a 15-8 victory over Horsham late Monday night at the Cameron County Little League in Emporium.

The victory put GWA into the Eastern Regional this weekend at the West Deptford Little League in Thorofare, NJ. The Eastern Regional is a double-elimination tournament running from Aug. 5-11.

“It was a big win for us,” said Manager Dean Carey. “To be able to beat the teams from the areas of Pittsburgh and Philadelphia… It’s part of your wildest dreams. It was a neat experience for all of us.”

Grove went 3-for-4 with a homer, double and four RBI to back the four-hit pitching of Nick O’Brien. GWA had lost to top-seed Horsham, 13-3, on Saturday afternoon in East Pool play. His two-run bomb over the right centerfield wall extended the Greater Wyoming Area lead to 15-8 after Horsham had closed to within five runs midway through the contest.

Matt Klimas also smacked three hits – including two doubles - and drove in three runs for Greater Wyoming Area. Erik Walkowiak also doubled among his three hits, and Bart Chupka singled, doubled and drove in two runs. Joey Erzar chipped in with an RBI single, and Dylan Pegg stole three bases and scored twice.

O’Brien – who also cracked three hits - struck out six to earn the win for GWA after relieving starter Mike Carey in the second inning. Jordan Zezza got the final two outs for GWA after O’Brien maxed out on his pitch count.

GWA 4, Crawford Co. 2

Greater Wyoming Area advanced to the Pennsylvania Senior Little League title game with a 4-2 win over Crawford County on Monday afternoon at the Cameron County Little League in Emporium. CC was undefeated and the No. 1 seed out of the West Pool.

Erik Walkowiak and Jake Granteed combined to hold Crawford County to a tournament-low output as the unbeaten team had combined for 35 runs in its three West Pool play games.

Walkowiak scattered eight hits in four innings, working out of a few jams in allowing just one run in his stint. Granteed struck out four in his three innings of work as he also allowed just one run. But the GWA standout got the support of his teammates in the final two innings.

Trailing 2-1, GWA scored two in the sixth to take a 3-2 lead, and added an insurance run in the seventh for the 4-2 advantage.

Granteed, Trent Grove and Jordan Zezza all came up with RBI hits, and Mike Carey scored two runs for Greater Wyoming Area.

The GWA defense also contributed mightily to the victory as Nick O’Brien kept runners out of scoring position by displaying a strong arm in centerfield, and Carey recorded a huge double play, snagging a line drive before doubling up a runner at second base.

GWA 11, Coatesville 9

Greater Wyoming Area bounced back from its first loss of the all-star season with an 11-9 win over Coatesville as it earned the East Pool No. 2 seed at the Pennsylvania Senior Little League state tournament at the Cameron County Little League in Emporium last Sunday.

And they needed a late rally to do so.

Coatesville – from suburban Philadelphia – scored eight runs in the top of the sixth to take a 9-7 lead. But GWA responded with four runs in its half of the sixth to retake control.

Jake Granteed earned the victory on the mound, and Erik Walkowiak preserved the win by striking out the side in the top of the seventh.

Bart Chupka paced the GWA offense with two doubles, a single and two RBI, and Nick O’Brien chipped in with a double and two singles. Joey Erzar added an RBI single for Greater Wyoming Area and Mike Carey scored two runs.

Regional notes

A New Jersey Team has won the East Regional the past 10 years. The last time a Pennsylvania team won the East Regional was in 1999 when the Franklin Little League won. The Marvine Dutch Gap LL from Scranton finished second last season…. The Greater Wyoming Area roster is comprised of Mike Carey, Erik Walkowiak, Jake Granteed, Adam Romanowski, Tyler Wrubel, Nick O’Brien, Freddie Cefalo, Trent Grove, Bart Chupka, Jordan Zezza, Bryant Clark, Matt Klimas, Dylan Pegg, Colin Herron and Joey Erzar…. GWA is managed by Dean Carey and his coaching staff of Freddie Cefalo, Trent Grove, and Joe Bellino…. Other teams playing in the Eastern Regional include Quincy, MA; Stony Point, NY; Edgewood-South Elmwood, RI; Edgewood (Bristol), CT; Waldo County, ME; Felton-Harrington, DE; Talbot (Home Run Baker/Easton), MD; and Freehold, NJ.

GWA 7, West Deptford 3

Greater Wyoming Area opened the Little League Senior Baseball Eastern Regionals with a 7-3 win over host West Deptford, NJ on Friday night in Thorofare, NJ – just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia.

For the first four innings of the victory, it looked as if GWA was in over its head.

West Deptford pitcher Keith Wallace retired the first 11 hitters of the game, striking out six, as Greater Wyoming Area struggled to put the ball in play. But after Trent Grove and Bart Chupka put together back-to-back singles, a dropped pop-up that would have ended the fourth sent GWA on its way.

The error allowed Dylan Pegg – who was running for Grove – to score from second, and moved Chupka to third. Chupka then scored on a passed ball, and just like that Greater Wyoming Area was ahead, 2-0.

One inning later, Jordan Zezza blasted a solo homer to put GWA ahead, 3-0, and give starter Adam Romanowski a comfortable lead.

Romanowski was also pitching a gem to that point, working out of a bases loaded jam in the first after some early control problems. The GWA righty struck out six over 5.2 innings before giving up a single and a homer as West Deptford got to within, 3-2.

GWA answered in the sixth when Bart Chupka blasted a home run over the left centerfield fence to give the locals an insurance run and a 4-2 lead.

One inning later, Greater Wyoming Area added three runs as Walkowiak doubled to lead off the inning before being knocked home by a Zezza single. Matt Klimas then drove in Zezza with a double, and would later score on a single by Mike Carey to push the advantage to 7-2.

West Deptford added an unearned run in the seventh but Jake Granteed shut the door in relief of Romanowski.

The victory put GWA into a game last night against Felton-Harrington, DE at 5 p.m. It is the Delaware state champs first game of the tournament.

A win on Saturday would move GWA to Sunday in a game against either Waldo County, ME or Quincy, MA at 5 p.m. A loss to Delaware would give GWA the day off on Sunday and push them to an 11:30 a.m. game on Monday against the winner of the West Deptford v. Maine/Massachusetts loser game.

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