From Staff Reports
POTOMAC PARK — Riverside Sports withstood the rapids for four innings to score three times in the bottom of the sixth to finish off an undefeated playoff run by winning the Hot Stove League finals with a 4-2 victory over Lakeview Auto Parts Wednesday at Hamilton Field.
The win makes Riverside 8-0 in the playoffs, sweeping all four series. Starting pitcher Brady Hillegas and Monday’s starter Bryce Nightengale each went 4-0 while splitting those eight starts.
After Hillegas led off the bottom of the first inning with a single and later scored, Lakeview pitcher Brooks Carr held Riverside hitless for the remainder of the first inning up until the sixth. It was Hillegas who got things started in the bottom of the sixth by collecting a leadoff single. He may have scored during the next at bat if not for Brett Oates running a ball down in the outfield for the first out.
Hillegas advanced when Carson Imes hit a single and would score on a triple by Nightengale. Darian King-Ottaviani and Charlie Twigg added infield singles before the inning was over.
Hillegas allowed a one-out single to Rodeheaver in the top of the seventh, but struck out the number three and four hitters in Lakeview’s lineup to eliminate any threat.
“No way,” said Riverside head coach Rodney Imes when asked if he thought about removing Hillegas in the seventh after allowing a base runner.
“He and Bryce have been unbelievable during the playoffs, and I wasn’t going to be too quick to pull him. He probably wouldn’t have let me if I tried.”
Lakeview took a 2-1 lead with two runs in the fourth inning. Carr led off the inning with a triple and was driven in by a Logan Yommer’s single. A second run was scored later on an error.
Yommer would finish with two singles and Oates added a double for Lakeview.
Carr had five strikeouts and three walks allowed in a complete game loss.
It is the first Hot Stove title for Riverside which won the first game 8-0 and finishes the season at 20-5-1. Lakeview concludes the year at 22-3-1.