Mason’s Walk-off Lifts Ponies To District Title
The Chincoteague baseball team capped off their tremendous regular season with the most exhilarating game of the year, pulling out a 3-2 win over Nandua thanks to a walk-off single to center from Ryan Mason. The win clinched the Ponies second straight District Title.
The Warriors would jump out to an early lead, plating a run in the top of the 1st. The lead wouldn’t last long though, as the Ponies came marching back in the 2nd. There, Chincoteague would get an RBI single to center by Collin Derrickson that would score Dustin Holloway. The game then quickly turned into a pitchers duel, as Holloway and Michael McCluskey would navigate tricky lineups, without allowing any damage. The Warriors would nearly take the lead after a deep shot was sent to dead center in the 4th, but Trevor Reed would make the catch going into the wall.. losing his sunglasses over the fence.
The Ponies would finally take the lead in the bottom of that frame, thanks to some aggressive base running. A walk and single would get runners on 1st and 2nd before a pass ball would advance the runners. Another wild pitch would then come, and Joe Thornton would take off, and score on the play just sliding under the tag to give the home team the lead. The lead looked to be enough for Holloway who would pitch strong into the 7th.
But that’s when Nandua would make their move. A single and a sacrifice bunt would put a runner in scoring position with 1 out. Ben Marra would then turn on a pitch to center, that would drive in Waylon White for the game tying RBI double. Marra wouldn’t be on second for long, as John Mark Kilmon would hit a chopper to short. The throw to the bag would be up the line, and that would allow pinch runner Kelly Reagan to score the go-ahead run. The Warriors would then get 2 quick outs to open the bottom of the 7th, and sat just 1 out away from a District Title.
But the final out of the game is always the hardest to get.
Reed would get a rally started with a single to left. That was soon followed by a Derrickson who would draw a walk. With runners on 1st and 2nd, Thornton would send a shot up the middle for a game tying RBI single, as Reed was able to slide in just under the tag at the plate. The runners would advance on the throw home, while left 1st base open. The Warriors would choose to intentionally walk the next batter, which brought Mason to the plate.
For a kid that had been slumping, he sure picked a big of a time to break out. On the first pitch he saw, the sophomore would turn on a pitch and send it to center for the walk-off RBI base knock. The Ponies stormed the field and go to to celebrate their 2nd straight title, earned with the most incredible and dramatic game they have played all year.