Sunday, March 29, 2020

Teaneck 10U split a “day-day” double-header with the PBI Eagles, winning the first game in thrilling fashion before dropping the “nightcap.”

Zachary Gibber was the star of Game One, driving in four runs–including the tying and go-ahead runs with two outs in the top of the 6th and throwing out the potential tying run at the plate in the bottom of the 6th.

With Coach Rothenberg saving ace Andy Rosenberg for Game Two, Ori Engel got the call in Game One and responded with four strong innings, giving up only two earned runs. With the score tied at 2, Teaneck rallied in the top of the 4th. After a long double by Ezra Halpert set up runners at 2nd and 3rd with two out, Zachary Gibber stepped in and belted the first of his two two-run doubles to right to give Teaneck the lead. But PBI struck back, surging in front with an unearned run in the bottom of the 4th and then a pair of runs in the bottom of the 5th.

Undeterred, Teaneck’s resiliency showed through in the top of the s6th as they rallied yet again. With one out, Eli Rothenberg got things started by drilling a ringing single to right and then stealing 2nd. The next batter was Ori Engel, who grounded back to the pitcher. But Eli Rothenberg alertly distracted the pitcher by dancing off of 2nd base, giving Ori time to reach 1st safely. After a double steal and a strikeout put runners on 2nd and 3rd with two outs, it was Gibber Time once again, as he blasted his second two-run double of the game to put Teaneck back in front.

But the drama was just beginning. In the bottom of the 6th, PBI put the leadoff man on with a bloop single. After a groundout and an error put runners on 1st and 3rd with one out, the next batter hit a hard ground ball just out of the reach of a diving Eli Rothenberg at 1st that looked like trouble. But Zachary Gibber was there again, backing up the play from his 2nd base position and firing home where Ezra Halpert expertly blocked the plate and applied the tag to preserve the lead. Elijah Mosberg took it from there, striking out the next batter to seal the exciting victory.

Teaneck was aggressive with the bats all game, with Eli Rothenberg and Aharon Neuer notching RBIs and Eitan and Ezra Haselkorn both garnering solid base hits

Game Two featured an offensive explosion from both teams. After giving up four well-earned runs in the top of the 1st, Teaneck put on its best offensive show of the year in the bottom of the inning, batting around and plating eight runs. Everyone contributed, with solid contact up and down the lineup.

But PBI came to hit as well, roaring back with five runs in the 3rd, seven in the 4rth, and two more in the 5th. Facing their biggest deficit of the year, Teaneck didn’t quit, loading the bases in the 3rd and 4rth innings, but the big hit proved elusive. Teaneck finally broke through for two runs in the bottom of the 5th, closing the gap to 18-10, but that was where things ended.

Noam Kornwasser turned in a strong game, with several long base hits and a number of sparkling plays in the field. Elijah Mosberg, Eli Rothenberg, Andy Rosenberg, and Ori Engel also contributed solid base hits, and Eitan Haselkorn, Ezra Haselkorn, and Aharon Neuer were their usual aggressive selves on the bases, as well as making a number of nice catches in the outfield.

Teaneck heads into the Sukkos break with a record of 3-2-1 and a sense that the team is starting to gel and the bats are starting to come around.

By Aryeh Haselkorn