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Chargers clinch LVCM playoff spot

The Northern Valley Connie Mack bats came alive during the regular season’s final week as the club made its way toward earning a spot in the Lehigh Valley League playoffs.

A tense 9-8 victory over Moore Township last Wednesday unofficially earned the Chargers their Lehigh Valley Connie Mack postseason invite, according to coach Joey Seremula. Two nights earlier on July 5, Northern Valley shutout Nazareth 12-0. The wins raised the Charger season record to 9-5.

“We played two solid games at the plate last week in scoring 21 runs,” said Seremula. “We are going into the playoffs with hot bats and we need that to continue.”

Shaun O’Donnell pitched well in both games, shutting out the Blue Eagles over four innings last Monday night, and surrendered three earned runs over 5.2 innings against the Redhawks.

“He threw strikes and made them hit the ball,” said Seremula of O’Donnell.

The Chargers offense wasted no time wasting Nazareth, scoring two runs in the first and two in the second. They bolstered the lead to 7-0 with three runs in the fourth before adding five more in the seventh. Wesley George led the Charger attack, going 2-for-3, with three RBIs, scoring one run and earning two walks. Erik Mather and Zach Russo each drove in two runs, while John Meltsch slapped two hits.

The Moore Township game was a back-and-forth offensive battle from the start as the visiting Chargers scored first on an error in the top of the first and added four more runs to take a 5-0 lead. The Redhawks did not give up, countering with three of their own in the frame’s bottom half and eventually taking a 6-5 lead thanks to RBIs from Nate Wolfe, Owen Laury, Jacob Nothstein, Aaron Schmoyer and Mason Haupt after three.

The Chargers responded with two runs in the fourth when Mather laced a 0-2 double, scoring the two runs. That lead was also temporary, as Moore wanted more and got it with two runs in the last of the fourth for an 8-7 lead. Northern Valley responded with two in the sixth, courtesy of an RBI single off Mather’s bat and an RBI groundout by George, which proved to be the game winner.

A July 6 game with South Parkland was rained out after four innings. This one did not start well for Northern Valley, as the Trojans scored 10 runs in the first. To their credit, the Chargers did quit and cut the lead to 12-4 when the rains came.

The team is ready for postseason glory, even if their health is not perfect.

“We have a few players fighting injuries and ailments,” the coach said. “But I’m hoping that five days off will fix that right up.”

PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Northern Valley's Sam Mauro dashes to first base during a recent Lehigh Valley Connie Mack League game. The Chargers opened postseason play this week after finishing the regular season in seventh place in the 24-team league.
PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Wesley George went 2-for-3, with three RBIs, one run and two walks in a recent win over Nazareth.