Station 11 Wins It All…Again!
The Local 798 Softball League completed competition on May 11 at Jackson Field with two exciting play-off games and one classic championship game. The outcome? The reigning champs of 2000, Station 11, a team of returning veterans, a team without uniforms, and yes, a team without a game ball, battled past runner-up Station 1 to capture yet another first-place plaque for their cluttered trophy wall.

Enthusiastic supporters in the bleachers were treated to softball at its finest. The morning games pitted archrivals Stn 11 v. Stn 6 on one manicured diamond with Stn 1 v. Stn 3 trading runs on the other. Both pre-rumble events were nail-biters that came down to the last inning in each thrilling game.

But when the thundersticks quieted and the dust settled the inevitable grudge clash between Stn 11 and Stn 1 became a reality. On a day when Station 11’s coach Con “I’ll Always Lead Off” Lucey could not attend, LWLP T/Coach Frank “Boom-Boom” Kosta stepped up to the task with poise and professionalism and carried on the tradition of losing the coin toss. What a beaut. Both S.F.F.D. Chief Paul Tabacco and Local 798 past President Jim Ferguson graciously honored both players and fans by throwing out the first pitches and the battle began. The 26th Street Bunch drew first blood with consistent team hitting in their first at bat. The champs set the standards for the day – they were there to have fun.

But the Alley Cats came to play also. Not to be outdone, Station 1 launched long balls early with a Scheppler rocket reaching the asphalt on 17th St. However, some minor adjustments by Stn 11’s stellar outfield soon rendered those long fly balls into long fly outs. And so the game progressed with each team swatting balls, dusting leather, and hurling rawhide while pushing across run after inspired run. After nine loquacious innings, Stn 11 touched more bases than did Stn 1. Ten more, to be exact. And Station 11 had become repeated champs!

Stn 11’s impressive offense scored a total of 50 runs in the two play-off games. Their impetuous scorecard listed veteran members “Jonnie O” Okamura, Greg “Cool Breeze” Hanson, Larry “The Yupster” Yup, “Super Dave” Maxion, Ken “Hubcap” Hupke, and Terry “TKD” Dailey playing in the dirt with Frank “Boom-Boom” Kosta, Alec “Hal” Balmy, George “The Natural” Debrunner, and “Dursban Dan” Romero roaming the outer lawn. Steve “I Need a Runner” Green rounded out the starting players. Station 11’s championship roster included prodigious season contributions from “Boob” Cappa (the owner), Steve “Kaz” Kazarian, Mario “Radio” Romero, Lorge “The Quiet One” Quant, Chris “Porkchop” Spear, Mario “I’m An Infielder” Flaviani, John “The Dude” Cavanaugh, “Big Ben” Canedo, “Chaz” Law, and Tom “Costco” Kiernan. Damian “The Boot” Orduna was on the roster but played for Stn 1 all season. Sort of. The twelfth player was always an automatic – Bill “Ferg” Ferguson – everybody’s favorite jackass.

Station 11 played as a solid team all year with no particular standouts – each member will be rewarded with a Most Valuable “Jackass” shirt from the excess refreshment money. (There was some?). A job well done by all – and many thanks to Local 798, Steve Engler, the umpires and groundskeepers, the old timers and fans, and all the players in the league. See you next year!

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