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Wilson defeats Twin Valley, advances to Berks baseball final

When you have an ace up your sleeve or in your back pocket, you look for the right time to make your play.

That moment for Wilson came in the sixth inning of Saturday’s Berks Baseball League semifinal.

With third-seeded Wilson holding a slim lead over second-seeded Twin Valley, left-hander Matt VanOstenbridge was called on to finish out the victory.

Van Ostenbridge got the last five outs to help Wilson defeat Twin Valley 6-3 and advance to Monday’s Berks championship game.

“When you’ve got Matty in your backpocket it’s hard not to go to him,” said Wilson coach Bill Underwood. “Ben (Kulp) did a great job, but we just felt like at that time it was time for Matty.”

Kulp limited Twin Valley to three hits over 5 ⅓ innings. But with a runner on second and Wilson clinging to a 5-2 lead in the sixth, Underwood made the call to the bullpen.

Kevin Eden greeted VanOstenbridge with an RBI double to trim Wilson’s lead to two runs. However, that was the only hit Twin Valley (15-5) managed off VanOstenbridge, who struck out the last two batters he faced to earn the save and notch the 200th strikeout of his high school career.

Underwood said he also wanted VanOstenbridge to get in some work before Monday’s championship game, when Wilson will face Berks I rival Gov. Mifflin (17-3) at 6:05 p.m. at FirstEnergy Stadium.

Offensively, Wilson (15-6) was opportunistic in a three-run second inning. The Bulldogs got just one hit in the inning off losing pitcher Owen Rhoads, an RBI single by Ryan Marmolejos. Wilson took advantage of two errors and scored on a fielder’s choice grounder by C.J. Fernandez and a sacrifice fly by Jack Gabel.

“You put the ball in play, make the other team make some plays,” Underwood said. “You can’t do much if you’re striking out. So you put the ball in play and see what happens, and that’s what we did.”

Paul Columbo kept Twin Valley in the game. He singled and scored in the second inning and doubled home a run in the third to trim Wilson’s lead to 3-2. Columbo had all three of the Raiders’ hits off Kulp, including a pair of doubles. He scored two runs.

Wilson countered with a two-run double by Christo Hunsicker in the top of the sixth and an RBI single by Fernandez in the seventh.

Source: Berkshire mont

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