Rob Potter | Democrat
THE MEMBERS OF the Smallwood-Mongaup Valley Fire Department softball team posed for a picture after winning the Eastern Sullivan Firefighters Softball League playoff championship on Thursday night at Edward M. Collins Memorial Park in Mongaup Valley. Kneeling, from left to right, are Frank Donohue, Shannon Dietrich, Tim Morey, Gerry Donohue, Greg Merton and Anthony Marciano. Standing, from left to right, are George Roosevelt, Rob Bonnaci, Patrick Bonnaci, Dennis Dietrich, Dez Gonzalez and Joe Bonnaci. Missing from photo are team members Dave Danciu, Jeremy Ernst, Loren Herndon, Barb Merton, John Panos and Pete Rossiter.
Smallwood Wins Firefighters League Championship
By Rob Potter
MONGAUP VALLEY August 21, 2007 The Smallwood-Mongaup Valley Fire Department softball team earned the Eastern Sullivan Firefighters Softball League title last week by defeating the White Sulphur Springs FD team.
SMVFD defeated WSSFD, 18-8, in the first game of the best-of- three series, which was played on Tuesday night at Gary A. Bradley Memorial Field at the White Sulphur Springs Firemen’s Park.
On Thursday night, SMVFD prevailed, 11-7, in Game 2, which was played at Edward M. Collins Memorial Park in Mongaup Valley.
In the first round of the league’s playoffs, WSSFD, which won the regular season championship by posting an 11-1 record, defeated fourth-place Neversink FD (7-5) two games to none. WSSFD prevailed by a score of 8-7 in the opening contest against Neversink FD and then took the second game, 18-9.
SMVFD, which went 9-3 and finished second in the regular season standings, reached the final series by defeating third-place White Lake FD (9-3) two games to none in the teams’ semifinal series.
In Thursday night’s game, SMVFD had to overcome an early deficit on its way to victory.
WSSFD took a 2-0 advantage in the top of the first. The first batter of the game, Charlie Roth, ripped a triple to right center field. The next batter, Josh Schwartz, grounded out to shortstop. But Roth was able to score on the play to give WSSFD a 1-0 lead.
After another out was recorded, Joe Decker doubled to center field. The following batter, Mike Black, singled to bring Decker in to score.
However, SMVFD tied the game and took the lead in the bottom of the first.
Anthony Marciano and Gerry Donohue hit a single and double, respectively, to put two runners in scoring position with no outs. Joe Bonnaci then singled to center field, allowing Marciano and Donohue to cross home plate to knot the score at 2-2.
Bonnaci scored the go-ahead run for SMVFD a few minutes later when Dez Gonzalez doubled.
After Gonzalez doubled, Tim Morey singled to center field. Shannon Dietrich, who had reached base on an error, scored on Morey’s base hit to give SMVFD a 4-2 advantage.
WSSFD regained the lead in the top of the third. With runners at the corners and two outs, Decker smashed a double to the fence in left center field. Both Devin Day and Matt DeWitt scored on the hit to even the score at 4-4.
Decker gave his team a one-run advantage when he scored on a single by Black.
SMVFD took the lead for good in the bottom of the third. Donohue began the frame by hitting a single to left center field. He later scored on a base hit by George Roosevelt.
Bonnaci gave SMVFD a 6-5 lead when he scored on a single by Gonzalez.
SMVFD added three runs in the fourth. With one out and the bases loaded, Bonnaci smacked a double to the base of the wall in left center field. All three runners Dennis Dietrich, Patrick Bonnaci and Marciano scored on the hit to give SMVFD a 9-5 advantage.
WSSFD cut that lead in half in the top of the fifth. Roth hit a one-out single and crossed home plate when the next batter, Schwartz, singled. Following the second out of the inning, Schwartz scored on Decker’s single.
The score remained the same until the bottom of the sixth.
Patrick Bonnaci led off with a single and scored later in the inning when older brother Joe Bonnaci doubled to center field.
Joe Bonnaci then scored the final run of the contest when Roosevelt reached base on an error.
WSSFD attempted to rally in the top of the seventh. Roth led off with a base hit. After one out was registered, Roth was tagged out at third base by Roosevelt on a fielder’s choice grounder to shortstop Marciano.
SMVFD pitcher Dennis Dietrich then induced a fly ball to the outfield for the third out of the inning to seal his team’s victory.