Martella’s Pharmacy swept a AAABA League interleague doubleheader against Altoona opponents and clinched the local league’s regular-season title on Saturday at Lilly.
Martella’s beat Johnston Realty 11-1 in the early game and defeated Ketrow Insurance 16-2 in the second game to clinch the franchise’s sixth consecutive appearance in the national AAABA Tournament.
The Johnstown league’s regular-season champion is guaranteed a berth in the national tournament.
“Our guys played really well so far,” said Martella’s manager Chris Pfeil, whose team is 27-4. “Obviously, we’re happy we clinched the regular season and have the top seed in the playoffs. Hopefully, we will carry momentum into the postseason.”
In Game 1, Martella's Pharmacy beat Altoona Johnston Realty 11-1, using a seven-run fifth inning to seal the win.
Martella's Pharmacy scored in the fifth on a two-run single by Nathan Neiderhiser, a run-scoring double by Luke Williams, a sacrifice fly by Pat Gully, a two-run single by Tony Strasiser, and a run-scoring single by Kyle Morrow.
Morrow had three RBI on four hits.
Martella’s Nate Pope struck out 10, allowing one earned run on four hits and one walk over five innings.
In Game 2, Martella’s had its big inning early, pounding out 10 runs in the first en route to a 16-2 win over Ketrow Insurance.
Tony Strasiser’s run-scoring single, a RBI triple by Kyle Morrow, a RBI single by Luke Williams, a RBI double by Nathan Neiderhiser, a RBI single by Nemo Trexler, a two-run single by Jesse Cooper, and a two-run triple by Strasiser in the first inning and a two-run single by Dillon Boyer during the second inning fueled Martella's Pharmacy's offense early.
Strasiser had two hits and drove in three runs.
Tim Mulvey got the win for Martella's Pharmacy. He allowed two runs over five innings. Mulvey struck out two, walked one and gave up four hits.
Martella’s has clinched the league’s top spot, and Delweld is locked in at fourth place. The Berkley Hills Renegades and Laurel Auto Group are competing for the No. 2 position entering the final week.
“We’ve had timely pitching all season long,” Pfeil said. “Offensively we’ve been able to manufacture runs and the group is very tight-knit. They’re very focused on what their goals are for the season. This is the first step of securing a spot in the tournament. Now over the next two weeks we’ve got our work cut out for us to gain a spot in the night game.”