Saturday 3 August 2019 the Fuquay-Varina Twins faced off in Salem, Virginia against the one seeded Kernersville Bulldogs for the Carolina Virginia Summer Collegiate championship. In a two of three series The Twins swept the Dogs 7-6, 11-2!
The 2019 season has been a roller coaster ride for the Twins who came in with high expectations after a 2018 regular season championship and a frustrating 2nd place in the tournament. 2019 saw the Twins hunger for the finals again. Starting off hot, the Twins had a 17 game winning streak with 12 Twins going to the All Star game as Coach Hauser was the East coach. After the break one loss and still winning with a 5 -6 game lead the Twins coach was hospitalized with gangrene for 10 days in the hospital and a toe amputation as the team went on 4-9 skid. Coming back and travelling to Kernersville for a DH on a Thursday night Twins ace, Adam Amerson lost a 6-5 game with only 2 earned runs against him. The Twins slipped to second by a game and ½ as coach Hauser coached in a wheelchair. That following weekend the Twins beat the High Point Thomasville Locomotives 21 -0.
Tournament play started on 1 August Thursday night as the Twins hosted the Roanoke Rails and won 12-6 with Mt. Olive pitcher Hunter Britt getting the win. Friday night the Twins hosted the Stem Thunder with league MVP pitcher Tripp Creech on the bump winning 1-4. The stage was set now for the showdown in Salem.;
At 14:00 the Twins squared off once more with Amerson eager for another chance against Kernersville. In the bottom of the first, the Dogs got two runs with high grass and three infield hits. However in the top of the second, the Twins got two with back to back homers by St. Andrews right fielder Dean Pulley and Methodist left fielder McKinley Strickland. The Dogs went up by one with homer in the bottom of the 4th, but in the top of the 5th, Youngstown State catcher Tanner Montgomery singled and N.C.C.U. DH Jacob Raby hit a shot over the 30‘ net in dead right at 335‘ to the wall . Then N.C.C.U. third baseman Cameron Norgren reached on an error and with two outs Mt. Olive 1st baseman Coy Barnett homered over right center. In the bottom of the 5th, the Dogs singled and homered setting the stage for drama, 6-5 Twins. In the top of the 6th, Montgomery walked and after heads up base running advanced to third on a single by Raby. Indiana Tech‘s Mike Snyder scored in “Monty” with a sac R.B.I. Going into the bottom of the 7th, the Twins with a 2 run lead Campbell pitcher Landry Moore struck out the two batter for the Dogs, however, the three batter homered on the first pitch to make it 7-6 Twins. Relief pitcher Braxton Boddorf came in and gave a single and walk to load the bases up. One could feel the tension as Guilford pitcher Joey Heggeman walked to the mound as cool as Coach Hauser had ever seen. Joey proceeded to strike out the 7-8 pinch hitters to get the save!
The championship game started 20 minutes after the first with the Twins getting 4 in the first when Snyder singled and Mt. Olive centerfielder Gunner Tolston homered some 400 feet to the wall and over the 30 foot screen. Then Barnett singled as Mt. Olive shortstop Jack Casbarro singled, Strickland walked and Pulley reached on an error and Methodist catcher Josh Lallo sac flied to score Casbarro. In the 2nd, Tolston reached on an error, Barnett singled, and Casbarro singled scoring two more. In the 3rd, Lallo doubled, Raby singled, Snyder was hit, and Barnett hit a moonshot in left center, after the 3rd it was Twins 10, Dogs 1, off of a solo Hr. In the top of the 7th, Raby hit a solo moonshot over the monster into a man’s house across the street as the Twins ended the game in the bottom of the 7th with a beautiful 4-6-3 double play. Catawba College pitcher Trent Montgomery went 7 giving up 2 runs on 3 hits. Twins win 11-2!
Coy Barnett was named tourney MVP as Twins Coach Hauser celebrated in a wheelchair having former Twin great Triton and Barton pitcher Louis DeCarolis handling the bases. The Twins got 8 HR, 2 doubles, 37 hits and 34 runs to 15 runs given up and only one error given. Go to FVTwins.org for scores and stats.