Gluckman edges Cooley in pitchers duel to give Maccabi USA Palm Springs Classic championship

Written by Bob on March 28th, 2016
Maccabi USA claimed the 2016 Palm Springs Classic with a 1-0 victory over the So. Calif. Bandits. Courtesy photo

Maccabi USA claimed the 2016 Palm Springs Classic with a 1-0 victory over the So. Calif. Bandits. Courtesy photo

By JESSE ORTIZ / President SCIFL

PALMS SPRINGS, Calif. – The So. Calif. Independent Fastpitch League (SCIFL) opened the 2016 season at DeMuth Park in Palm Springs, Mar. 12-13, but it almost didn’t happen because rain threatened the tournament the day before. Luckily the weather cleared up and the tournament was able to proceed. There were six teams that participated in the Palm Springs Classic.

On Saturday after the Round Robin was complete, the So Cal Bandits took the No. 1 seed going undefeated, followed by Pala, Maccabi USA, Beaumont Coyotes, So Cal Heat, and Team DM.

One Sunday, the So Cal Bandits began its run to the championship game by facing So Cal Heat. The game was a battle through three innings, but the Bandits broke the game open by scoring six runs in the fourth inning that helped move them to the championship game where they faced Maccabi USA.

Cory Wertz notched the win by allowing three runs with four strikeouts before Joel Cooley came in to close out the game.

Maccabi USA started off their run to the championship game by defeating Team DM 7-5. Their next opponent would be No. 2 seed Pala, with Sonny Perkins facing off with Jason Gluckman in a very close seven inning contest.

Maccabi scored two runs in the third and Pala answered back with a run the fifth. The game stayed scoreless the rest of the way, with Maccabi advancing to meet the So. Calif. Bandits for the championship.

The So. Calif. Bandits played well in finishing second in the 2016 Palm Springs Classic. Courtesy photo.

The So. Calif. Bandits played well in finishing second in the 2016 Palm Springs Classic. Courtesy photo.

The Bandits sent Cooley to the circle, and Maccabi USA countered with Gluckman. Both right-handers were at their best, with the only run coming in the second inning when Maccabi’s Joe Schwartz singled to right-field, sending Aaron Owens racing home for the 1-0 victory.

Owens opened the inning with a walk and moved to third on Danny Cosgrove’s single to right. Cooley toughened by retiring the next batter to end the inning.

The Bandits threatened in the sixth on a single by Cooley, who advanced to third on Cory Wertz’s double, but Gluckman stopped the rally by retiring the next three batters. Gluckman sealed the win with a scoreless seventh to give Maccabbi the championship.

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