Quinn Construction sweeps its way to DNL championship
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Moments before Monday's Game 3 of the McKeesport Daily News League championship series, Quinn Construction coach Tom Simcho still had not decided who would pitch against South Park.
Would it be 17-year-old Brandon Donovan, who led Steel Valley to a WPIAL championship in May? Or would it be Dan Laird, a seven-year veteran of the Daily News League?
Simcho leaning toward veteran experience proved to be the right move, as Laird helped Quinn Construction shut out South Park, 1-0, and complete a three-game sweep for back-to-back league titles.
“(Laird) stepped up like a veteran today,” said Simcho, who has won DNL titles as a player and coach. “I can't say enough good things about the way he played.”
Laird tossed a complete game in which he struck out four and scattered five hits. He also induced 12 ground-ball outs while using a minimal amount of pitches.
“My two-seam (fastball) was working really well, my changeup was working,” said Laird, who won Game 2 of last year's championship series. “I probably only threw three curveballs today.”
Laird dedicated the victory to his father's memory.
“My dad, he passed away last year and he was my No. 1 motivator,” Laird said. “He's always in the back of my head.”
South Park, which had six players batting .400 or better, lost as much in two days than it had in three months of the regular season.
At 19-2 entering the playoffs, South Park, which beat Quinn twice during the regular season, was the consensus team to beat.
Quinn swept a doubleheader Sunday, and finished the series Monday night at Beedle Park.
“I knew it was going to be a battle, to say the least,” South Park manager Mike Monaco said. “A sweep never really entered my mind.”
Quinn's Adam Becker singled in Jake Liposky for the game's only run.
In the top of the fifth, South Park's Adam Dodson singled to right and a double by Ben Nolan put runners at second and third. But Laird got Brady Benedetti to ground out to end South Park's best shot at tying the game.
South Park right fielder Ryan Dodson, who batted .537 to lead the league during the regular season, injured his left hamstring while attempting a sliding catch in the third inning and did not return.
Logan Corrigan took the loss. He went six innings and struck out two.
The former Hot Shots Saloon, South Park completed its second season in the DNL and expects to bring back most of its players next year.
“To do what we did in our second year of existence, I'm extremely proud of these guys,” Monaco said. “Hopefully, we'll contend again next year.”
Ed Phillipps is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Man dies in jump from Route 130 overpass onto passing tractor-trailer in Hempfield
- Starkey: Penguins’ season impressive so far
- Chick’s Bar in McKeesport catches fire
- Penguins a love affair for Evancho sisters
- Firefighter hurt in 3-alarm fire at Jefferson Hills restaurant
- None hurt in Duquesne house fire
- Singer Joni Mitchell hospitalized in Los Angeles
- Pirates’ search for division title rests on starting rotation’s health
- Consol Energy files for IPO of coal spin-off
- Hornqvist’s net-front presence with Penguins could be valuable asset
- Pirates again approach Polanco about contract extension