The Home Run League, out of Hopkins/Eagan, Minnesota, went 2-1 in pool A to begin the 2020 NWLA National Tournament. Once the bracket was set, they were slotted at the eight seed. The Dong Show went 5-1 in the bracket to claim the first Cup of their careers at the NWLA Tournament.
In the opening bracket game, they went 10 innings, and ended up walking it off in the bottom of the 10th on an Evan Sibbet RBI. Flakne threw 10 innings of 2 hit wiffle ball, while striking out 22 and walking just 1.
To cap off Saturday night, HRL squared off with Tommy Loftus and the top seeded Ridley Park Wiffleball League. The game headed to extras again, HRL got rolling in the top of the seventh, where they plated 4 runs on 2 hits, then a shutdown bottom half advanced them to the winner's bracket finals for Bracket A on Sunday.
Flakne was back at it early on Sunday morning. He struck out 12, walked 2, and allowed 2 hits against MAW in the winners bracket final of Bracket A. Evan Sibbet got the game winning RBI again, this time in the top of the 6th, he singled to break the scoreless tie. Flakne powered through the bottom of the 6th to make it a complete game performance, advancing HRL to the Bracket A finals, 1-0.
In the finals of Bracket A, the Dong Show took on AWAA, a matchup which they would have to lose twice, because of the double elimination format. AWAA won a hitters battle in game 1, 13-10. Game one had a combined 23 hits. AWAA ran out of gas in game two, their 10th game of the two day tournament. HRL lived up to their nickname, as they had six home runs in an 18-1 route to secure their spot in the championship game.
The Championship game was the latest in NWLA Tournament history, a near 7:30 pm start under the lights of North Strabane Township Park in Canonsburg, Pa. The game was a pitchers duel between Flakne and Miller, of KWL. Miller got erratic in the third inning and walked home a run. Evan Sibbet struck again for HRL, with a 2-RBI single in the top of the 5th inning. Flakne tossed a one-hitter, struck out 16 and walked only three to guide HRL to victory.
HRL earned their first Cup and has improved their all time record to 50-20-4 at the NWLA Tournament. They join OCWA, TBW, WSEM, WILL, and AWAA as tournament champions in the now nine year history of the NWLA Tournament.