The best-of-three Island Softball League semifinal series are each tied at one game apiece, with the decisive third games scheduled for Monday night at Veterans Park.
The semis opened on July 31, with the lower seeds pulling off upsets. The evening began with the No. 4 Brewhas handing the top-seeded Blazers their first defeat of the season, 13-8. Marc Doyle racked up six RBIs for the night with a grand slam and a two-run homer, while Matt Rivers and Tom Benedict each homered once.
In the nightcap, the defending champion Highlanders, seeded third in the postseason, beat the No. 2 Whitecaps, 16-7. The Highlanders did their damage with singles, scoring two runs in the third, eight in the fourth, and three in sixth. Matt Kurth and Russell Hodson each went 3 for 4 at the plate, and John Mazza was 3 for 5.
The return encounters on August 1 were a different matter. The Blazers needed one inning to warm up, scoring only twice, but their bats came alive with a vengeance as they scorched the Brewhas, 34-7. Luke Nagle had a hat trick of homers, and Billy Panek also went yard as the Blazers batted around the order in two separate innings.
The Whitecaps evened their series with an 11-7 win over the Highlanders. The two Lukes, Brewer and Bettencourt, led off the ’Caps second inning with back-to-back homers, and Bettencourt went yard for three more in the fourth. The Whitecaps put five on the board in the sixth after Brewer hit a two-run homer and Tom Corr added a three-run shot.