July 19, 2024
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July 19, 2024
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Teaneck TBO 10U Baseball Advances to Championship

As New York baseball fans know all too well, a great regular season can be meaningless if you don’t show up when it counts. The #1 seed Teaneck TBO 10U baseball team showed up in its first playoff game on Sunday morning to defeat #4 seed Fort Lee, 10-1, to advance to the Northeast Bergen All-Stars (NEBAS) National Division championship game.

Teaneck had recorded a resounding 29-8 mercy rule shortened two-hit victory over Fort Lee earlier in the season, but in the first inning it was clear that Fort Lee was a much-improved team and that this would be a different game. Starting pitcher Avi Pasternak took the mound with his usual amazing plate crossing pitches, but the Fort Lee bats went on the attack. A Fort Lee hard-hit leadoff double to left field served as the wakeup call in this game, but it was quickly answered by Teaneck’s defense as left fielder Aiden Merkin made a great throw to third baseman Caleb Block who tagged out the Fort Lee batter’s attempt to advance to third. Aggressive running on the base paths, and a strong Teaneck defense, would be a theme in this game. Shortstop David Siev caught a hard-hit line drive to record the second out, but a Fort Lee line drive single and a walk would put runners on the corners. As Fort Lee attempted a double steal of home plate and second base, catcher Shai Zaretsky threw out the runner at second base, but not before the Fort Lee runner crossed home plate. Fort Lee’s starting pitching was also the strongest Teaneck had faced all season, and David Wilbur managed to turn a walk into a run as he stole each base and crossed the plate on a fielder’s choice by Block. The teams would exchange strong pitching and fielding in the second inning to keep the score knotted at 1-1 through two innings.

Siev took the mound to start the third inning, retiring the side with two strikeouts and shortstop Block’s fielding and throwing out a hard-hit ground ball. Teaneck pulled ahead in the third inning as a Merkin fly-ball single and Zaretsky walk put runners on for team-leading hitter Wilbur. Wilbur delivered with a two RBI line drive triple to right field, and then he would steal home bringing the score to 4-1. Fort Lee made a strong comeback attempt in the fourth inning, but with two outs and runners on second and third base, catcher Benjamin Chetrit made the momentum swinging defensive play of the game as he tagged out a Fort Lee runner attempting to steal home plate.

Closing pitcher Wilbur took the mound for the fifth inning and struck out the side. Teaneck opened the fifth inning with singles from Merkin and Zaretsky. Wilbur would once again deliver with a hard hit two RBI ground ball double, advancing to third base on a throwing error. Block hit his second fielder’s choice RBI on the day, scoring Wilbur to bring the score to 7-1. After a Pasternak walk, Siev crushed an RBI line drive double to score Teaneck’s eighth run. Aggressive and alert base running scored Teaneck’s final two runs as Siev and Nate Tenzer crossed the plate to bring the score to 10-1. Wilbur struck out the side in the top of the sixth to punch Teaneck’s ticket to the championship game.

The Teaneck TBO 10U team, coaches, parents and fans have become a family over the three-month season and it was on display on Sunday. DJ Jon Merkin, father of Aiden Merkin, set the playoff mood at Clubhouse as he played the team-parent curated “TBO 10U Baseball Playoff Hype Mix” of the player’s favorite songs. Photographer Zach Margulies (@zmargstudios), uncle of Avi Pasternak, captured the expert action shots of the game that you see featured in this week’s article. Lastly, Micah Kaufman has been cheering on the boys throughout their run and provided a post-game ice cream truck celebration for the team. The team thanks you all!

Teaneck TBO 10U hosts River Vale in the NEBAS National Division championship game this Sunday at 9:30 a.m. at Clubhouse Field at Votee Park. Come out and support the boys as they battle for the NEBAS championship!

By Coach Jason Demby

 

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