Struthers, OH – The 2022 NABF Senior World Series at Bob Cene Park hosted 14 teams from Canada, Michigan, New York, and Ohio. Team Ontario Astros and East Coast - Michigan represented the province of Ontario and the Great Lakes State, respectively. Astro Falcons, Ohio Avalanche, Creekside Fitness, Knightline, Ohio Longhorns - DeMarino, BHM Buckeyes, Diamond Hit Club, ProNine Baseball, North Coast Select, Premier Ohio - Abella Northeast Ohio, and Troy Legends were all from Ohio. The SAYO Grays was the only team from New York out of the borough of Brooklyn.
Unlike the Junior World Series, the Senior Division had two pools of five and a pool of four where each pool winner and wild card advanced to the Semi-finals. In the pools of five, each team would be played once while the pool of four had one club that they played twice.
After the first three days of the tournament, Astro Falcons and Knightline were the winners of pools A and B, but a tiebreaker was decided to determine the final pool winner and wild card. Ohio Avalanche and Ohio Longhorns - DeMarino were even at each tiebreaker, so a coin flip was needed. Avalanche lost the flip, which meant the Longhorns won pool C, and the Avalanche was the wild card. In the Semi-Finals, Knightline barely hung on by a thread to defeat the Avalanche 8-7, and the Longhorns took down Astro Falcons 9-4.
The championship was a tightly contested one that the Longhorns won 5-3 behind the right arm of Dominic King and the bat of Trevor Vojtkofsky. King worked around a pair of walks to Alec Grzyb and Chance Laczko with help from Alex Parker, gunning down a runner attempting to steal third. Knightline starter Grzyb also got himself in trouble in his half by allowing a single to Vojtkofsky followed by a walk to John Simecek and a Drew McKenna base hit. Grzyb escaped by getting a pop-up to Anthony Massucci at first.
Knightline got on the board first on a Teagan McCurdy RBI single, but the Longhorns answered right back. After Grzyb retired the first two he faced in the second, he walks Nicholas Herbele, and then three consecutive singles by AJ Caggiano, Parker Monday, and Vojtkofsky resulted in two runs scoring. With a slim 2-1 advantage, King threw up a zero in the third inning, where the Longhorns added a tally in their half. Parker drove home Donovan Daetwyler on a single, making it a 3-1 game.
King once again worked out of trouble in the fourth after Mike Sciortino got aboard via a walk and Gavin Shrum moved him up on a sacrifice bunt. Then, McCurdy reached and stole second, where Knightline had an opportunity to tie the game with a base knock. King had other ideas as he fielded a soft tapper back to the mound and his center fielder Monday made a tremendous catch to end the threat.
Knightline kept the Longhorns off the board in the fourth, and it looked promising in the top half of the fifth for the Youngstown Class B team following a Jake Hettrick pinch-hit double, but Hettrick got caught in run down after Grzyb’s sacrifice bunt. Laczko popped up to Parker behind the plate to retire the side.
The Longhorns made it a 4-1 game on a Caggiano RBI single which equaled their largest lead of the afternoon. Knightline cut the deficit to two by scoring an unearned run in the sixth on a Schrum sac fly to center. Just as Knightline was inching closer, the Longhorns gained the momentum back on an inside-the-park home run by Vojtkofsky.
In the seventh, Knightline scored a lone tally, and King took care of the next three hitters making the Longhorns the NABF Senior World Series Champions. DeMarino’s team began to gather on the field, which was followed by both teams standing on their respective baselines to start the presentation of the Runners Up and Championship trophies and medals. Then, the All-Tournament Team was announced that concluded with the Batting Champion and MVP. Trevor Vojtkofsky was the Batting Champ after hitting .706 (12/17) with 1 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 5 RBI, and an OPS of 1.809. The MVP went to AJ Caggiano who hit .500 (8/16) with 2 2B, 1 3B, 6 RBI, and a 1.250 OPS.