Thomson Merchants Finish 1-3 at World Tournament

August 25, 2009

Moline, IL

Thomson Merchants Finish 1-3 at World Tournament

TheThomson Area Merchants men’s fastpitch softball team competed in the ISCWorld Tournament finishing with a 1-3 record. The Merchants started thetournament by beating the Kegel Black Knights 4-0 in the opening game of thetournament. That advanced Thomson into the second round against the defendingchampions, the Kitchener Ontario Rivershark Twins, where they lost 4-0. Twodays later the Merchants lost to the Ashland Mets 4-1 and St. Thomas Ontario3-0.
Ingame 1, the Merchants got on the board in the bottom of the 2nd withback to back doubles by Rob Bennett and Bruce Bielema. The Knights threatenedin the 4th getting two hits to start the inning and advancing therunners to second third. But the Merchants held and the score remained 1-0until the bottom of the 6th. Marcelo Malatesta lead off the 6thinning getting hit by a pitch. Walks to Scott Beal and Mike House loaded thebases with two outs where Kevin Anderson hit a ball in the hole that theshortstop booted to score Malatesta. Thomson finished the inning with a doubleby Marquise Cody to score two runs. Jonas Mach went the distance for theMerchants allowing 4 hits and striking out 12. Beal also had a hit for theMerchants.
TheMerchants gave the crowd an exciting game against the defending champs as thegame was scoreless through 4 innings. In the 5th the Twins startedby getting 2 bunt singles to start the inning and then an RBI single for thefirst score of the game. On the play Thomson committed an error by overthrowingthe catcher allowing another run to score. Another single and a double scoredthe final 2 runs of the inning. Beal was the only base runner for the Merchantswhen he reached on an infield single in the 5th inning. AndrewPutnam pitched well for Thomson as he allowed 7 hits and struck out 4.Unfortunately 5 of the 7 hits came in the 5th inning as Jonas Machhad to come in and get the final out after the Twins scored their 4 runs. Machdid not allow any hits and struck out 3.
TheMerchants started out well in the next game and took a 1-0 lead in the top ofthe 4th inning when Bennett singled and was advanced to second on aground out by Beal then scored on two wild pitches. But, the Mets came rightback in the bottom of the 4th getting a runner to second basefollowing a Merchants error. That runner was able to score on an infield singlewith two outs. Thomson continued to have trouble fielding the ball in the 5thinning when the Mets got a runner on base and then back to back errors allowedtwo more runs to score. The Mets finished the scoring in the 6th bygetting a runner on with a walk and advancing him to second on a ground out.But, a pass ball and bad throw to third allowed the runner to score. TheMerchants out hit the Mets 6-3 and had 10 base runners, but were only able toget one of those base runners across the plate. Cody, Ray Sharp, BJ Gulick,Bennett, Bielema, and House all had hits for the Merchants. Mach struck out 10.                    
Thomsonwas eliminated from the tournament by losing to the Evergreen Centennials ofSt. Thomas. St. Thomas scored all 3 runs in the 1st inning on only 1hit. A lead off walk and then a hit started the inning and then an errorallowed the first run to score. The second run scored on a ground out with thethird run scoring on a sacrifice fly. Each team had only three hits in thegame. Getting hits for the Merchants were Cody, Gulick, and Beal. Putnam struckout 9.
Bealled the team in the tournament batting .429 going 3 for 7 with 3 walks. Codyalso had 3 hits and hit .214 for the tournament. Bielema, Bennett, and Gulickhad 2 hits each. The strength for the Merchants was their pitching as Machallowed no earned runs in 15 1/3 innings giving up 7 hits and striking out 25.Putnam pitched 10 2/3 innings and gave up 10 hits with 13 strike outs.Unfortunately for the pitchers, the Merchants committed 8 errors in the final 3games.
Completeresults and stats for the Thomson for the tournament and the season can befound on the team website at

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