By Michael Bower
Blake Wagenseller wanted his last game in the majors division for the Poway American Angels to be a memorable one. The star pitcher turned in a game on Tuesday he and the rest of his teammates will likely remember for a lifetime.
Wagenseller ripped a solo home run in his final at bat and struck out 12 on the mound, as the Angels rolled to an 8-1 victory over the Poway National Brewers in the Poway City Championship game at Poway National Little League Field. It is the 11
time in the last 17 years that a Poway American team has claimed the title.
“I was so excited that I couldn’t sleep the night before the game,” said Wagenseller, who carried a no-hitter through four innings and retired 10 in a row at one point. “I will remember this game until the day I die.”
Justin Miller and Carlo Escobar led the offensive attack for the Angels. Miller went 2-for-3 with three RBIs and Escobar finished with two hits and an RBI. The victory capped a tremendous year for the Angels, who finished with an 18-7 overall record and a first-place finish in the regular season.
“We came to play today,” Angels coach Dave Miller said. “This team has fought hard all year. We were the best team in Poway American; we just lost that final game in the tournament. For some of these guys it is their last game in the majors. I told them to not let this second chance get way. They wanted to go out and win their last game.”
The Brewers struggled to mount any offense against Wagenseller, but Dayton Dooney broke through in a huge way in the fifth inning. Dooney ripped the first pitch he saw over the centerfield wall to breakup the shutout and no-hit bid by Wagenseller.
But it wouldn’t be enough, as Wagenseller answered the call with a solo home run of his own in the sixth inning.
“My last game couldn’t have gone any better,” he said. “A home run in my last at bat, I pitched great and we won.”