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New Jersey puts down threat, knocks Gresham out of World Series

Nationals finish their stay in Williamsport with an exhibition game against Uganda on Tuesday morning


by: THE OUTLOOK: DAVID BALL - Gresham manager Jason Trickel watches the action from his spot along third base during Saturdays 10-4 loss to Parsippany, NJ

WILLIAMSPORT — Gresham manager Jason Trickel was hoping for one more hit. It didn’t matter if it was a home run or a blooper off the end of the bat. One hit that would have tied the game and perhaps shifted the momentum entirely to the Nationals side.

After falling behind early, the Gresham all-stars closed to within 5-4 and had Tyler Pederson at third base with the tying run. Christian Turner stepped into the batter’s box and grabbed everyone’s attention with a long fly ball that brought fans on both sides to their feet. The ball soared through the night sky, floating high among the stadium lights before falling into the glove of right fielder Daniel Ruggiero to end the third inning.

“We started swinging the bats, and the kids got excited when we put some hits together,” Trickel said. “We were one good hit away from tying it.”

Instead, Parsippany, NJ maintained their slight edge and put the game away with a four-run spurt in the fifth inning. Ruggiero came up big in that spot as well with a two-run single through the right side to spark the rally.

Parsippany lead-off hitter Emil Matti was the star of the night, smacking home runs in his first two at-bats and finishing up with a double and two walks. He scored four times.

“It didn’t matter where we put the ball, he hit everything on a rope,” Trickel said. “The beginning of their lineup hit the ball hard all night long.”

Indeed.

The team’s top five hitters combined to go 9 for 18 (.500) with seven RBIs.

Gresham relief pitcher Tyler Linch threw three strikeouts and got out of bases-loaded jams in the fifth and sixth innings without surrendering a run.

The Nationals couldn’t close the gap, getting only one base-runner over the final three innings — that coming on an error.

Look for an extended game story, along with other World Series coverage, in the Tuesday, Aug. 21, print edition.

by: THE OUTLOOK: DAVID BALL - Greshams Tyler Pederson takes off toward third base after sending a double into the left-field gap in the third inning Saturday night.



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