Milltown bows out of state Legion tournament


Staff Writer

MILLTOWN – The Milltown Post 25 Senior American Legion team bowed out of the Union District Tournament this weekend with losses to Sparta and Flemington.

In the tournament opener, Post 25 ran into some formidable pitching and fell to Sparta, 6-3.

“Basically, they made plays when they had to, and we came up short,” Milltown Post 25 head coach Dan Fredericks said. “They took control of the game early, while we pretty much self-destructed. We committed an uncharacteristic seven errors and that came back to haunt us.”

In the second game, Post 25 Willy Beard went to the mound to calm the Broad Street bats. The result was an 18-7 mercy-rule victory in seven innings.

“We thought we had a good chance of taking that one with Beard on the hill,” Fredericks said. “We also knew Broad Street can hit the ball so it wasn’t going to be a cakewalk.”

Bryan May came up big at the dish with four RBIs off a pair of doubles, and Mike Hohman was dazzling in the outfield.

“Hohman played his first game in center field and made two highlight catches,” Fredericks said. “You can put him anywhere and he doesn’t just hold his own, he becomes the best player on the field at that position.”

Billy Krapf and Anthony Addone also had successful outings collecting two hits apiece in the win.

In game three, Milltown Post 25 had its top arm in Matt Metsch on the mound and appeared poised to advance. Unfortunately, Metsch was victimized by errors as Post 25 lost 4-3 to Flemington. All four of Flemington’s runs were unearned.

“We gave away runs and the result was an earlier exit than we had hoped for,” Fredericks said. “We committed three errors and all came back to hurt us. We thought going into this tournament our pitching could carry us, but the tournament didn’t go according to plan and we didn’t get to some of our arms. We got unlucky with the weather pushing back our first game, but that’s the way it goes. We ran into some hot pitchers and teams that made plays.”

For Metsch, a long career with Milltown Post 25 came to an end. The accomplished hurler was outstanding in his run. He lost just two games in three years pitching with the club.

Metsch’s efforts helped the team place fourth in the state in 2004, second in the state in 2005, and second in the Mid-Atlantic Region in 2005. Last year’s team finished among the Top 16 teams in the country. Despite finishing the season with fewer decorations than team’s of the recent past, the 2006 Post 25 team ended the summer with a 21-6 record.

“Guys like Matt Metsch, Chris Affinito and Billy Krapf have left lasting impacts on this program,” Fredericks said. “They will be sorely missed come next summer, but the leadership and attitude they brought to this club will be present.”