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Lenape rides strong bats to Group 4 final

The Indians defeated Clearview and will meet Washington Twp. in the sectional title game.

If it's better to be lucky than good, it's best to be both.

That was the Lenape baseball team Tuesday.

The Indians caught a break when a seemingly routine, two-out fly ball was lost in the sun and fell for a three-run double in the second inning of a South Jersey Group 4 tournament game against Clearview.

But Lenape also rapped 14 other hits, including six for extra bases, received good work from starting pitcher Jeff McGarry, and scored an 11-5 victory in the sectional semifinal.

"I'll take it," Lenape coach Phil Fiore said of Stefan Kancylarz' sun-kissed double. "That's part of the home-field advantage. That's part of being the No. 3 seed."

Lenape (22-4), the No. 1 team in The Inquirer Top 10, advanced to play Olympic American rival Washington Township in Friday's sectional championship game.

Clearview, the 15th seed, fell to 14-9 with two Tri-County Royal games still on the schedule.

"I couldn't be prouder of these kids," Clearview coach Rocco Cornacchia said. "To come this far as a 15th seed, that was exciting."

McGarry, a junior righthander, pitched five innings, allowing two runs and two hits. He struck out five with no walks.

McGarry also went 3 for 4 with two ground-rule doubles and three RBIs. Steve Kramitz and Jason Bohrer hit home runs for Lenape.

"I know we can hit," McGarry said. "When we start hitting and I gain confidence, it's smooth sailing."

Clearview ace Shane Taylor, a senior righthander who has signed with North Carolina, left the mound after two innings because of a blister on the middle finger of his throwing hand, according to Cornacchia.

Taylor had a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the second. He appeared to be out of the inning on Kancylarz's fly ball, but it dropped in and three runs scored.

"We talked before the game about not giving them four or five outs," Cornacchia said.

"Lenape is a quality team. They are going to be tough to beat in this tournament."

Clearview 020 003 0 - 5 7 2

Lenape 050 150 x - 11 15 3

WP: Jeff McGarry. LP: Shane Taylor. 2B: L-Brian Tabott, Stefan Kancylarz, Chris Malinowski, Jeff McGarry 2; C-Giovanni Azzari. HR: L-Steve Kramitz, Jason Bohrer.