With impressive pitching and timely hitting the Event Helper fast pitch softball team blanked A-Z Supply, 5-0, in the Nevada County Fast Pitch semifinals Wednesday at Memorial Park.
The victory extends Event Helper’s win streak to 16 games this season and puts them in the title game at 7 p.m. today against the Precision Pump Dirtbags.
Event Helper pitcher Will Maddux was dominant from the circle with 10 strikeouts in the complete game shutout. Maddux, whose regular season ERA is 0.94, spread out five hits and three walks over six innings of work.
“I just go out there and challenge these hitters,” Maddux said. “They’re a good team, (A-Z) put the ball in play, and I just let my team play defense, and they made some great plays, and my team’s always going to score runs. I have absolute confidence in them.”
From the plate, the big bat of Daryl Allen led the way with three hits, including a two-run home run in the fifth.
“Daryl has been the best hitter in this league for years,” Maddux said. “He’s in that RBI position for a reason.”
After the home run, Allen came to the crowd and gave his mom a kiss on the cheek.
“She hadn’t seen one in a while, so it was nice to deliver one for mama,” he said.
Allen finished 3-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
Event Helper second baseman Brandon Moran-Smith also went deep with a two-run jack to right-center in the fourth.
“The guys are getting hot now with the bat,” Maddux said. “I have a lot of trust in them to come through in the right times.”
A-Z would threaten in the fifth inning, trailing 3-0, but Event Helper was up to the challenge. A-Z’s Troy Dutra led off the inning with a double, two batters later Bruce Porter reached with an infield single, and Billy Davis followed with a walk to load the bases with just one out. Maddux bore down and got the next two batters on strikeouts.
“I had a couple big strikeouts,” Maddux said. “I had to go at them to get the strikeouts and made some really tough pitches, and I did at that time. It doesn’t always work out that way. Sometimes you got to hump it up in those situations and get the strikeouts.”
Allen gave much of the credit for his team’s success to the whirling arm of Maddux.
“When you got good pitching, you just need a couple runs, and that’s enough,” Allen said.
A-Z pitcher Kenny Brose pitched well in five innings of work, striking out five and walking three, but allowed eight hits and three walks.
Contributing from the plate for Event Helper was Ben Maddux with two singles, Andy Lanier with a knock and a run scored, and Martin Savedra with a base hit.
For A-Z, Craig Fleenor, Brose, Rob Waldman and Porter all had singles.
Event Helper will look to make it 17-straight wins and, with that, take home the Nevada County Fast Pitch title against the Dirtbags at 7 p.m. today at Memorial Park.
To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.