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 Saturday, July 10, 2004




Quick start carries Tri-County

An 11-1 lead is enough to hold off Blue Mountain in annual all-star game.

Special to The Morning Call


This much is certain: Ryan Amey will be the brunt of a large measure of good-natured ribbing the next time the Lehigh Township Brewers take the field for a Tri-County League game.

Brewers shortstop Jeremy Bartha clouted a towering two-run home run to left field on Friday night to jump start the Tri-County League to an 11-9 victory over the Blue  Mountain  League in their annual all-star classic at Limeport  Stadium.

Bartha's victim?

Tri-County teammate Amey, a hard-throwing right-hander who "double rosters" with the BML's Hellertown Royals.

"Yeah," Bartha said later.  "It's already started.  I met Ryan under the stands after we both came out.  He'll hear more the next time we play. "

Bartha's blast got the Tri-County  squad off and winging in the top of the first inning and it never trailed.

The lead went to 3-0 in the second and to 4-0 in the third on RBI singles by Pat Higgins and Joe Pochron.

The Blue  Mountain  League  broke through for a single tally  in the bottom of the third on Dan Borden's triple, but Trico opened things up with a big five-run outburst in the fourth.

Bartha singled in one run, Eric Ruff's single accounted for a pair, Darrin Lenhart plated a fourth with a sacrifice fly and Jeremy Arner singled in the fifth.

An unearned run in the fifth made it 10-1 and another tainted tally made it 11-1 in the sixth.
Bartha, Ruff and Matt Marcks each finished their night's work at 3-for-4.

Frank Mastroianni whacked a three-run, opposite field homer to give Blue  Mountain 's dormant offense a lift in the sixth and Nick D'Amico's moon shot with two on in the eighth brought the BML back to within 11-7.

A two-out error in the bottom of the ninth enabled Blue  Mountain  to make the winners squirm, but Brian Boylan -- also from Lehigh Township --  induced a fielder's choice  from Rob Corsi to end the game.

This was Bartha's third all-star game, and he admitted it was his best performance.  But he insisted the biggest thing for him was, "I had the most fun this time.  That's the idea in a game like this one.

"There are great guys on both teams, so, while you obviously want to win and to do well yourself, I come to these things just to have fun. "

One thing Lehigh Township manager Shawn Andrews, who managed the Trico squad, did ask of his troops was to get off to a good start.

His shortstop complied.

"Yeah," Bartha said, "that's one thing Shawn did say.  And they did beat us two of the last three years.

"What makes it so much fun is that a lot of guys do double roster in both leagues, and Ryan [Amey] is one of them.  That he pitches for us in Tri County made it even more fun. "

Tri-County        211 511 000 --  11 18  2

Blue Mountain  001 003 032 --    9  12  3

Derek Major, Todd Stapleton (3), Nolan Fry (4), Chris Clancy (5), Joe Gangemi (6), Jeff Krauss (7), Luke Pyle (8), Christian Fretz (8), Brian Boyla (9), Ryan Windt (9) and Jeremy Arner, Julio Acosta (5), Chris Peters (8); Ryan Amey, Matt Maradeo (3), Joe Chapman (4), Matt Wiltrout (4), Ryan Dalton (5), Ryan Fritz (6), Sam Landis (7), Bret Remel (8), Mark McGeehan (9) and Anthony Recker, Eric Schmitt (6).  HR - TC: Jeremy Bartha (1st, 1 on); BM: Frank Mastroianni (6th, 2 on); Nick D'Amico (8th, 2 on).  W - Major.  L - Amey.

Ted Meixell is a freelance writer.


From The Morning Call -- July 10, 2004

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