Wargo Flooring captures tourney crown in walk-off fashion
It appeared as though the championship game of the 7th Annual Homer Dome Softball Classic would be just a formality.
After all, Wargo Flooring had absolutely dominated the first two days of this weekend event. The Braves were undefeated and had dispatched each of their four opponents in Mercy Rule fashion.
Meanwhile, Davis Excavating had suffered an early loss, dropped into the consolation bracket, and barely survived a semifinal encounter with a scrappy Hawley Diner squad.
All signs pointed to a blowout. But, as a great American philosopher once said: “That's why they play the game.”
Davis Excavating used a relentless offensive attack to post a 20-14 in the opener of what became an electrifying doubleheader.
However, Wargo Flooring rallied from a late-game deficit to win the nightcap, 24-23, and capture the crown.
Andrew Yeager played the hero's role, crushing a solo walk-off homer in the bottom of the seventh.
It was a fitting conclusion to a wildly successful tournament. Nine elite teams from all over the area took part, attracting hundreds of softball fans to downtown Waymart.
In the process, thousands of dollars were raised to help with local projects.
“I'm very happy with how the whole weekend went,” organizer Bob Barna said on Sunday. “The weather cooperated for the most part and we had a very good turnout.
“I'd really like to thank my staff for all their hard work. None of this could happen without them. I also want to thank the school district and the community for supporting us.”
The first dream Barna and his staff hope to realize is installing lights at the ballfield so that night games can be played by Waymart Baseball Association and Wayne County Men's Softball League squads.
“We've been going strong for seven years now and we don't have any plans to quit anytime soon,” he said.
Next year's edition of the Homer Dome Classic is tentatively scheduled for the last weekend in June.
For further information or to find out how you can help, please visit the Facebook page or contact Bob Barna 570-499-0171.
On a Roll
Wargo Flooring ran roughshod over over its competition during the first two days of the tournament.
The Braves opened their gold medal quest with a 16-0 thrashing of Novoa's.
Frank Bannan was the star of this one. The veteran right-hander pitched a four-inning no hitter in leading his team to victory.
Wargo's followed that up Saturday morning with a 17-2 rout of Gravity Inn.
The Braves then cruised to an 18-3 victory over FYI Graphics and a 27-12 win against the Swords. These results propelled Wargo's into the winner's bracket final where they awaited an opponent Sunday everning.
Davis Excavating took a long and winding road to the championship series.
A team built around former Honesdale baseball stars, Davis fell into the consolation bracket after a loss to Hawley Diner.
However, the local lads battled all the way back. They avenged their lone loss with a win over Hawley Diner, then punched their ticket to the finals with a 14-11 victory over the Swords.
Pat Hart, AJ Meyer, Alex Dieterich, Alex Evanitsky and Peter Kelly all played key roles for the underdog Davis squad. However, one former Hornet stood head and shoulders above the rest on Sunday evening...
Early & Often
Jordan Meyer paced the Davis Excavating offensive assault.
A Honesdale High School graduate who went on to play Division I baseball at LaSalle, Meyer batted clean-up throughout the tournament and struck fear in the heart of every pitcher he faced.
Just in the last two games of the event, Meyer ripped seven hits, of which five were homeruns. In addition, two of those were grand slams and he finished up with an eye-popping 14 RBIs. In two games.
Incredibly, even this Ruthian display wasn't enough to deliver a tourney title to Davis Excavating.
The squad jumped all over Wargo starter Bob “Reggie” Bunnell in the opener, scoring 17 runs in the first four frames.
Bannan came on in relief midway through the frame and would pitch the rest of the way for the Braves.
Davis rode that early outburst to a 20-14 win in Game One, forcing a winner-take-all proposition in the nightcap.
With a large, enthusiastic crowd cheering them on, the two teams went toe-to-toe in a final that can only be described as “epic.”
Davis erupted for 10 runs in the top of the first, then added six more in the next two frames and appeared to have Wargo's on the ropes.
AJ Meyer homered in his initial at-bat, but Jordan did him one better with round trippers in each of his first two plate appearances.
To their undying credit, the Braves refused to roll over. They chipped away against Davis starter Ryan “Biggie” Taylor to stay within striking distance.
The big breakthrough came in the bottom of the fourth, though, as Wargo's exploded for 10 runs and took the lead.
Justin Collins, Drew Boandl, Mark “Ma” Bell, Mark Tesseyman, Ken Morris, Dale Snyder and Steve Musso and Russell Gregory all contributed key base knocks.
Davis fought back once more, rallying to tie the score off Bannan in the top of the seventh.
However, it was Yeager who delivered the game-winning blow. The Braves' slugger crushed a towering shot deep over the wall in left center for a 24-23 win, setting off a wild celebration at home plate.