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THE last time the Crown Bakery Phillies and Junior Nationals faced one another, the Phillies walked away with a two-run victory.
The two teams met up last night for second-round action in the Budweiser Baseball League at Paseo Stadium in Hagåtña. Crown Bakery looked to pick up another victory and hold on to third place in the league standings, while the Junior Nationals hoped to inch closer to the .500 mark. At the end of seven complete innings of play, the Phillies held on to an 8-4 lead over their younger opponents.
Crown Bakery got the game started making a defensive statement immediately in the top of the first inning, retiring the Junior National side in order. Offensively, the Phillies managed to put two runs on the board to take the early lead. A leadoff single by Shon Muna Jr. followed by a walk from Joe Duenas put runners on for the Phillies. Two batters later, Matt Muna hit a sacrifice fly that brought in Muna for the game’s first run. Before the Nationals recorded the third out, an error allowed Duenas to touch home plate to give the Phillies a 2-0 lead.
After giving up a run in the bottom of the second inning, the Junior Nationals came back in the top of the third inning with a positive response. Singles by Darrin Pangelinan and Daniel Cruz combined with a walk by Davin Chiguina loaded the bases for the Nationals. A wild pitch by the Phillies allowed Pangelinan to trim his team’s deficit to 3-1. Moments later, a Shane Muna RBI-single scored Chiguina, making it a one-run ballgame. The Junior Nationals managed to score Cruz to equalize the game before the third out was notched by the Phillies.
The tied game didn’t last too long as Crown Bakery immediately answered back in the bottom of the third. With Derwin Aguon and Chad Fernandez on base, the Phillies’ Calvert Alokoa stroked a long-ball for a three-run homerun giving his team a 6-3 lead.
Later in the bottom of the sixth inning, Crown Bakery upped their lead to 7-3 after an RBI-single by Branden Fernandez brought Muna Jr. across home plate. Despite trailing, the Junior Nationals continued to fight on every at-bat. With runners at the corners in the top of the seventh, a steal attempt home was successful by Shane Muna for the score, making it a 7-4 game. In the bottom of the seventh, a Jathan Muna-Barnes RBI-double gave the Phillies back their four-run lead.
Budweiser Baseball League action resumes later tonight with the defending champion Braves taking on the Cougars at 7 p.m. The Braves will look to improve their record to a league-best 10-0, while the Cougars are seeking win number three.