Cal-State Builders / Eventhelper put it all together to win ASA National Championship

Written by Bob on September 10th, 2013

antonio.mancha.44 Antonio “Tony” Mancha of El Paso, Texas, led the Cal-State Builders / Eventhelper.com to the ASA Class A National Championship with his arm and his bat. Photo By BOB OTTO / 2010 NAFA World Series

SALEM, ORE – The hitting was clutch, the defense solid, and the pitching superb. And in fastpitch softball that is a recipe for success.

Often in a big way.

For the Cal-State Builders / Eventhelper.com, none was bigger than winning the 2013 ASA Class A Men’s Fastpitch National Championship at Wallace Marine Park in Salem, Oregon, Sept. 1.

Eventhelper (4-0) swept through the six-team national tournament undefeated, capping their run with a 5-3 victory over the Portland Columbia River Brewers (3-2) in the title game.

    PECK AND MANCHA TOUGH

Brandon Peck and Antonio “Tony” Mancha combined to hold off the Brewers through seven tough innings, with Peck picking up the win and Mancha getting the save, along with belting a home run.

“Tony Mancha really brought confidence to this team and awesome leadership,” said first baseman Donovan Chilton III, who was selected an ASA All-American. “And Brandon is a big 6-foot-4 kid from Canada and only 21 years old, who threw just as good as any pitcher out there with lots of movement.”

Peck went six innings, allowing two earned runs on six hits with eight strikeouts. Then in the seventh, Mancha was asked to close it out. But it wasn’t easy. The Brewers opened the seventh with its first, two batters reaching safely off Peck. But the uprising stopped right there.

    MANCHA PUTS OUT FIRE

The right-handed Mancha was summoned, and he struck out the next two Brewers and got the final out on a comebacker to seal the championship for Eventhelper.

“This was the first ASA national championship for the Cal-State Builders / Eventhelper team,” said Dave Carlton, manager and owner of the Builders, a strong NAFA and ISC caliber team. “Great ball was played all weekend.”

Eventhelper scored all its runs early with two runs in the second inning and three in the third. In the second, Mancha led off with a single and eventually scored on a wild pitch. Dave Carlton brought home the second run with an RBI single to right that drove in Justin Deme, who reached safely on a hit to centerfield.

Then in the third, Mancha – who swings the bat as well as he windmills a softball – ripped a homer 325 feet to left-centerfield with two aboard to give Eventhelper a 5-1 advantage.

The home run pitch came off one of 2013’s top North American pitchers: Canadian Scott Lieph.

“He just kept busting me in, in, in, so I finally just looked in and happened to hit it,” said Mancha of El Paso, Texas, who was selected the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.

But from there, Lieph and Rick Smith shut down Eventhelper, while the Brewers chipped away with single runs in the second, fifth and sixth innings.

But it wouldn’t be enough on this day against the Cal-State Builders / Eventhelper, a ball club brought together for the national tournament through the efforts of manager Will Maddux of Grass Valley, Calif. and Dave Carlton of San Mateo, Calif.

Eventhelper reached the championship with three close encounters: They opened with a 1-0 win over the Columbia River A1 Rockies; held off the Lacey A’s Cardinals 4-3, and beat Lieph and the Brewers 2-1 in the winners bracket final.

Knocked into the losers bracket, the Brewers defeated the Cardinals, 4-2, for another crack at Eventhelper.

    HURLERS DOMINATE

In the winners bracket final, Mancha matched up with Lieph in a classic pitchers duel. Lieph pitched a gem, allowing but one earned run on four hits with 14 strikeouts and a walk. But Mancha came out the winner. He scattered three hits, walked five, and struckout 11, and didn’t allow an earned run.

Mancha got all the support he needed in the second inning when Chilton tripled and Justin Deme followed with a walk, with both later scoring – Chilton on Ben Maddux’s single, and Deme sliding safely across home plate on a wild pitch.

The Brewers scored their lone run in the fourth on Shawn Mandolesi’s RBI single. But from their Mancha toughened and in the bottom of the seventh he struck out the side to pick up his third win of the tournament.

    CHRISTIANSEN’S LEAP KILLS BREWERS’ THREAT

However, the outcome could have been different without Eventhelper second baseman Matt Christiansen’s play-of-the-game. In the fifth, a pair Brewers reached first and second with one out.

That brought Todd Budke to the plate. And the ISC Hall of Famer ripped into a Mancha offering, sending it rising like a rocket and destined for the right-centerfield gap.

But before the ball could leave the infield, Christiansen leaped, made the catch, and then doubled off the runner at second to end the Brewers final threat.

    EVENTHELPER’S ROAD TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP

Eventhelper 1, CR A1 Rockies 0
Eventhelper scored the lone run in the second inning of its opening game when Chilton walked with one out and eventually scored on an infield error. Mancha made the run stand up, holding the Rockies to two hits with 18 strikeouts and three walks.

Eventhelper only collected three hits of Kevin Kammueller (2013 ISC II All-World pitcher with Cal-State), who struck out 11 in going the distance. Matt Christiansen was 2 for 3 and Will Maddux, 1-2.

Eventhelper 4, Lacey A’s Cardinals 3
In another nail-biter, EventHelper broke a 3-3 tie in the bottom of the seventh for a walk-off win when Mancha doubled to center, driving in Jenner Christiansen, who opened the inning with a single. Mancha went seven innings, allowing no earned runs and two hits, while walking two and striking out 12. Cardinals’ Canadian Shawn Koster pitched well in matching Mancha with 11 strikeouts.

    ASA CLASS A FINAL STANDINGS

1. www.Eventhelper.com, Grass Valley, Calif. 4-0
2. Columbia River Brewers, Vancouver, Wash. 3-2
3. Lacey A’s Cardinals, Renton, Wash. 3-2
4. Bakersfield Silverhawks, Calif. 1-3
5. Columbia River A1 Rockies, Portland, Ore. 1-2
6. Cleon’s Auto, Federal Way, Wash. 0-3

    Eventhelper placed five players on the All-American team that includes:

Pitcher, Antonio Mancha, www.EventHelper.com
Pitcher, Scott Lieph, Portland Columbia River Brewers
Pitcher, Shawn Koster, Lacey A’s Cardinals, Renton, Wash.
Catcher, Jeff Twist, Bakersfield, Calif. Silverhawks

Outfield, Mark Summers, Cardinals
Outfield, Shawn Mandolesi, Brewers
Outfield, Robert Maddux, Eventhelper
Outfield, Justin Deme, Eventhelper

Utility, Kevin Rasmusson, Brewers

Infield, Pat Sagdal, Cardinals
Infield, Doug Cain, Brewers
Infield, Donovan Chilton III, Eventhelper
Infield, Mathew Christiansen, Eventhelper

    TOP ASA HONORS
  • Most Valuable Player, Antonio Mancha
  • Batting Champion, Pat Sagdal
  • Home Run Champion, James Close
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