K-Tribe wins Mills Cup
Published in Sports on September 12, 2006 2:04 PM
FREDERICK, Md. -- Revenge is sweet.
For the second time in the last three seasons, the Kinston Indians are Carolina League champs as the K-Tribe completed a three-game sweep of Frederick with a 2-1, 11-inning victory Monday night. In 2005, the Indians lost the first two games of the title series at Frederick before winning a pair at home. The Keys won 2-0 in the decisive Game 5 at Grainger Stadium to take home the league title.
This time, the Mills Cup is coming back to Kinston.
Jordan Brown scored from third on an infield single by Chris De La Cruz for the winning run in the top of the 11th inning. Brown singled with one out and advanced to third on a two-out double by Stephen Head. De La Cruz hit a slow rolling grounder up the third base line that the keys Tripper Johnson could not handle.
K-Tribe reliever Randy Newsom picked up the win and the Mills Cup Championship Series MVP by getting Kinston out of a bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the 10th inning. Newsom came in with one out and the bases loaded and struck out two batters to push the game to the 11th.
In the 11th inning, Frederick had a runner on third with one out. Arturo Rivas tried to score from third on a suicide squeeze, but Travis Brown couldn't get the bunt down and Kinston catcher Javi Herrera tagged Rivas out at home. Kinston got the final out of the game on a base runner interference call when Morgan Clendenin interfered with Rodney Choy Foo making a play on a ground ball between second and third. Kyle Collins was on the mound to pick up the save.
Indians starter Chuck Lofgren, with the most wins in the minor leagues this season, picked up the no decision, but kept Kinston in the game early. Lofgren went seven innings, giving up five hits and one earned run, while striking out seven.
It was the first Mills Cup Championship Series Sweep since 2003.
Kinston erased a 1-0 defecit in the sixth inning when Argenis Reyes scored on a Frederick error. With Reyes at first, a routine ground ball off the bat of Micah Schilling got through the legs of Frederick second baseman Paco Figeroa and rolled into center field. Reyes rounded third to score as the throw from the outfield was thrown wide of home plate.
It stayed tied at one until the top of the 11th.
With the victory, Kinston won its sixth Carolina League titla. Five of those championships have been in the last 20 years, with Kinston as an affiliate of the Cleveland Indians.
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