D&Q Distributors and POI Aviation recorded separate victories at the continuation of the Tan Holdings 40th Anniversary Sports Festival's 18U Youth Baseball Tournament to move a win away from marching into the finals.
D&Q defeated Kanoa Resort, 8-3, last Sunday, while POI snuffed Fiesta Resort, 6-5, last Monday to arrange their duel for the first finals ticket this Saturday at 10am at the Francisco “Tan Ko” Palacios Ballfield. Fiesta Resort & Spa and Kanoa Resort will square off in the other game this Saturday at 1:30pm with the winner facing the loser of the D&Q-POI tiff for the second and last finals berth this Sunday at 10:30am. The winner-take-all finals will also be played this Sunday.
Ton Guerrero led off for the D&Q Distributors, hit a single, and hustled around for the first blood, before Kanoa Resort's Brett Halstead drove home Ricardo Dela Cruz in the second inning to knot up the match.
D&Q later moved in front, 3-1, in the fourth inning thanks to a triple by Alex Monkeya, who scored Jonathan Cabrera. Monkeya sprinted the last 90-feet after an ensuing error.
Kanoa was then hung up in a double play in the bottom frame and D&Q pulled away, 7-1, as the former's defense made too many extra throws. D&Q's Palmerson Monkeya doubled home Ton Guerrero and the former, Jobe Reyes, and Craig Aguon all made it around off errors before Kanoa could get off the field.
Joseph Atalig came in to close the game for D&Q, had one out in the sixth inning, and though he had plenty of rope to work with his teammates backing him up, he slung around another double play just after Kanoa chalked its final run in the last stand.
In last Monday's game, POI Aviation broke the ice in the third inning by chipping out three runs off four hits, which were highlighted by an RBI double from Lancaster Secharmedal, who brought Kanoa Wanket home.
Lucio Kalen led off the inning with a single and eventually scored off a wild pitch just before clean-up man Ian Rogolifoi drove home Secharmedal.
Fiesta pulled within a run in the top of the fourth inning, but POI got one back in the bottom framed to double them up, 4-2.
Fiesta's Jun Rabauliman weaseled on and around as his teammate Jake Flores grounded in Kenji Yamagata, but a blip in the group's defense enabled an unearned run to the plate in the bottom portion.
Fiesta mustered a run off errors in the fifth inning, but POI wiped it away in the bottom frame with the help of a passed ball and then locked it up at 5-apiece in the top of the sixth inning. Thanks to an RBI base smash by TJ Sablan and a wild throw that scored Flores, who doubled his way on the path.
POI's fourth pitcher Peter Lieto committed the error after just stepping to the rubber, however he recovered quickly and got out of the jam.
Fiesta also called on its closer, AJ Lizama, to start the sixth and he handled the bottom half of POI's lineup, but his team also went three up and three down at the plate in the clutch.
Lizama then ran into trouble against POI's key players in the final standoff. Kalen drew a leadoff walk, stole second base, and was moved to third by Secharmedal, who then had a nice little walk off a sacrifice fly from Rogolifoi.