Magic sweep Cyclones to move atop the American League
LA PORTE- With 1st place in the American League on the line, the Flat Rock Cyclones traveled to Magic Park to take on the Maple City Magic at newly renovated Magic Park.
Also on the line was the golden cane trophy which was created by Shane Anderson after hearing Mark Richards call the Magic old on The ORWBL Live Show.
Although Maple City is one of the more experienced teams in the league, Anderson among other Magic players took the comments to heart while also having some good fun with it.
To make things even more interesting it was Mark Richards vs. Shane Anderson as the pitching matchup in Game 1. Anderson clearly came out with a chip on his shoulder this week as he was able to shut the Cyclones down for the most part.
The Magic set the tone in the top of the 1st inning on the defensive end as Caleb Jonkman scaled up the new Magic outfield wall to rob what would have been a Tyler Shupert Home Run.
It was definitely a fun play to watch as it looks like Maple City’s new sturdy outfield wall will end up being a home field advantage as their players continue to learn how to play the wall.
Maple City struck first when Wes Ellis hit a screaming line drive Home Run over the freshly painted left field wall. The Magic would score a couple more runs over the course of the next few innings on a Caleb Jonkman Home Run and on a Wes Ellis RBI Single.
Wes Ellis flashed his hops as he would also make a remarkable soaring catch in right field to rob another Home Run as well. With Anderson pitching the way he did and with the Magic defense on point, 3 runs was all Maple City would need as they held onto the Game 1 by the score of 3-1.
In Game 2, Wes Ellis took the mound for the Magic while Mark Richards took the bump again for the Cyclones. With the score tied at 0 heading into the bottom of the 2nd inning, Maple City exploded for 7 runs.
Maple City had to be encouraged by the fact that it was Drew Luther & Shane Anderson who kickstarted the big inning as those two’s success usually goes hand in hand with the Magic’s success.
Before this series, the Magic had struggled to receive much contribution from the bottom of their order but that changed in a big way in this series.
Anderson & Luther combined for 7 hits, 7 Runs, 6 RBI, & 3 HR’s in Maple City’s game 2 victory.
Jared Jonkman also continued his hot start to the season as he belted out 2 HR’s to go along with 5 RBI in the Magic’s 13-4 victory. John Arndt came in to notch the save on the mound in the 6th inning as he actually was able to get his son Nate out to end the game.
Heading into Game 3, the Cyclones trailed the Magic by 1 game for the American League lead as they looked to salvage the series with a win.
Game 3 had a fun storyline as the pitching matchup featured John Arndt vs. Nate Arndt on Father’s Day. The Cyclones jumped on John early as they tallied 3 runs in the 1st inning.
With Maple City looking to pick up a big sweep, Manager Alex Friedman had a short leash for John Arndt who was pulled after the 1st inning. Wes Ellis was brought into pitch as he did a fantastic job of slowing down the Cyclones who had jumped out to an early lead.
The Cyclones held a 3-0 lead heading into the Bottom of the 2nd before Maple City poured on 6 runs to take a 6-3 lead.
Ellis really helped himself out this game as he would lead the way at the plate with 3 hits, 3 runs, 5 RBI, & 2 Home Runs.
While John Arndt’s time on the mound was short lived, he would end up having a productive game at the plate as he went 2-4 as he hit a 2 run shot off of Nate to cap off the 6 run inning.
Shortly after the 2nd inning, a heavy rainstorm finally reached LaPorte as the rest of the game was played in extremely wet conditions. Despite the rain, Ellis continued to have his way with the Cyclones offense as nobody outside of Mark Richards was able to get much going offensively.
The Magic would strike for 4 more in the 4th inning after Bronson Severs kickstarted a rally with a line drive single over the heads of the Cyclone defense.
Drew Luther & Shane Anderson capped off their breakout performances as they combined to go 4-5 with 3 runs in the series finale.
With the Magic up 11-5, Shane Anderson entered the game as he locked up his 2nd save of the season while clinching the series sweep for the 3x defending champions.
This was certainly not the series results that Mark Richards & his Cyclones had hoped for as they headed into the series with an 8-1 record atop the AL standings.
It is worth noting that Flat Rock was without one of their key players Owen Satoski who was unable to attend. His absence surely affected the Cyclones who struggled to receive little contribution outside of reigning American League MVP Mark Richards.
Richards did his thing at the plate as he went 8-14 with 5 HR, 7 RBI, & 5 runs on the day. The rest of the Cyclones lineup combined for only 10 hits, 3 HR, 3 RBI, & 5 runs in the series, leaving most of the production to Richards.
The entire Flat Rock team has to be eager to bounce back from their subpar performance. Considering this team was off to a hot 8-1 start, it is likely a safe bet that these guys will be more than ready to play in rivalry week.
Flat Rock (8-4) will look to bounce back as they will host the Elkhart BFAM (4-5) who will be coming straight from their make up series from Week 4.
As for Maple City (10-2), they will now turn their attention to the New Carlisle Newts (11-1) who will travel to Magic Park in a highly anticipated World Series rematch from last season.