Highlanders win men’s softball championship

The Highlanders were number one after winning their second title in four years. — Photo by Ralph Stewart

The Highlanders capped a 20-2 season Thursday, in front of nearly 100 fans at Veterans Park by beating the Brewhas 21-12, to sweep the best of three Martha’s Vineyard Men’s Softball League championship series 2-0. The Highlanders won the series opener 16-12 Wednesday.

The Highlanders won their final 19 games and dedicated the championship season to the late Jeff Kurth whose sons, Ryan and Matt, play on the team.

The title is the second in four seasons for the young, talented Highlanders who came from behind, outscoring the Brewhas 11-0 in the final two innings.

The Brewhas, one of the league’s founding members nearly 30 years ago and winners of 11 titles in the past 20 years, were making their first finals appearance since 2008.

Thursday, the Brewhas started off with a seven-run first inning. Tisbury School principal John Custer belted a three-run homer to key the outburst. The veteran team continued to slug the ball well through the first four innings. Matt Gebo hit two home runs adding up to three RBIs, and Shawn Reed went yard with a two-run shot to left.

With the Highlanders down 12-10 entering the sixth, Jeremy Scheffer launched a two-run homer to right, tying the game and seizing the momentum. John Mazza and Ryan Kurth doubled in the seventh, as the Highlanders batted around and built a comfortable lead.

As they had in the sixth, the Brewhas went down 1-2-3 in the seventh and the jubilant Highlanders celebrated the second title in the team’s history.