Arlington BMT prevailed in a grinding battle that left dozens of runners on base to upset the #2 A's.
The #3 seed Arlington BMT punched a ticket to the DC Wood Championship series to face the Falls Church Barons after winning two elimination games against the #2 seed Alexandria Athletics.
BMT, which includes players from 3 teams who compete in the summer DC Wood season, faced an uphill battle in its semifinal series vs. the Athletics. In game 1, BMT's offense was shut down by veteran pitcher Steve Lohrman who led the Athletics to a 7-4 victory.
When BMT opened Game 2 with 8 players, they gifted the Athletics an opportunity to steal an early lead. BMT tempted the baseball gods by playing with 2 outfielders but managed to escape the 1st inning with no damage before their 9th man arrived. In the bottom of the 1st, BMT's patient approach at the plate and timely hitting allowed them to take an early lead which grew to 10-1 after 3 innings. BMT held on as the Athletics came storming back on BMT starter Mahl and closed the gap to 10-9 after a Tom Garboczi solo HR in the 8th inning. Mahl, who was at times let down by his defense, earned a complete game victory.
For Game 3, BMT turned to Tyler McCarthy to start his first game on the mound this season. McCarthy pitched into the 7th inning exiting with a 5-2 lead. With runners on 1st and 2nd and no one out, BMT brought in James Abrahamsen for relief as the middle of the Athletics order threatened. Abrahamsen was able to pitch out of the jam and throw another inning of scoreless relief in the 8th. BMT added 2 key insurance runs in the top of the 9th as the Athletics once again threatened in the bottom of the 9th by loading the bases with no outs.
BMT's Strain was able to pitch out of trouble and strike out the side and BMT held on for a 7-3 win to clinch the series.