The Northwest (Upper Arlington) American Legion Post 443 baseball team scored four runs in the top of the ninth inning against Dublin (Scioto) Post 800S on July 22 in a losers bracket game of the District 12 tournament, but it was too little, too late as Post 443's season ended with a 9-7 loss.

The Northwest (Upper Arlington) American Legion Post 443 baseball team scored four runs in the top of the ninth inning against Dublin (Scioto) Post 800S on July 22 in a losers bracket game of the District 12 tournament, but it was too little, too late as Post 443's season ended with a 9-7 loss.

"At the beginning of the game, we couldn't get much going," said junior pitcher and shortstop Andy Bean, whose team finished 13-20 overall after going 8-6 in District 12. "They got most of their runs early on, but we hit well late in the game."

"(The rally) was a good sign for us," coach Todd Pfeil said. "We've come back in a lot of games this year. We put ourselves in a bad position but we kept chipping away."

Northwest lost to eventual champion Worthington Post 239 12-0 on July 20, then beat Hilliard (Darby) Post 614C 7-2 on July 21.

"At the beginning of the season I said our goal was to get better each and every day, and I think we did that," Pfeil said. "We were playing our best baseball in the month of July and that carried over into the tournament."

Eleven of the players on Post 443's roster played on the UA varsity last spring as UA finished 13-14 overall and 3-7 in the OCC-Buckeye Division.

Jack Clark (P/1B), who batted .418 with 19 RBI and a home run, was the only graduate on the team. All the other players are expected back next season.

Among the offensive leaders were Sam Brody (.391, 31 RBI, 25 runs, 2 home runs), Raleigh Pearson (.356, 25 RBI, 30 runs), Justin Ping (.378, 16 RBI, 33 runs, 9 stolen bases), Phil Jaskot (.293, 13 RBI, 28 runs, 7 stolen bases), Bean (.282, 20 RBI, 11 runs, 5 stolen bases) and Matt Gibbs (.409, 13 RBI, 10 runs).

Anchoring the pitching staff were Rob Brewer (3-2, 2.92 ERA, 52 strikeouts in 38 1/3 innings), Scott Schubert (2-2, 2.94 ERA, 23 strikeouts in 31 innings), Sam Clark (1-1, 2.36 ERA, 20 strikeouts in 26 2/3 innings) and Andrew Heddon (2-2, 1 save, 2.91 ERA, 10 strikeouts in 21 2/3 innings).

"We had a pretty big learning curve this season," Bean said. "Most of the players we had on the varsity this spring were playing on that level for the first time. We came together as a team.

"Playing Legion ball this summer is going to help us. We got to find out how good the pitching is out there and what you need to look out for during the spring."

Pfeil, a 1991 UA graduate, is curious to see how the members of Post 443 perform next season.

"We're always bringing up new guys and getting them exposed to a faster game than what they see at the junior varsity level," Pfeil said. "Baseball is a game that you have to work on each and every day.

"There's a sense of pride about getting the up-and-coming players ready for high school ball. That's why we have Legion ball. Next spring they won't have to work out the kinks because they've already gone through a whole summer of playing together."