Dust Devils roll to 11U Spring Fever championship

By DN WRITING STAFF | May 21, 2024

By Sean Reilly

Bohdan Wisniewski was given a simple suggestion as he prepared to lead off the fifth inning in the championship game of the 11U Spring Fever tournament on Sunday afternoon at Diamond Nation. 

He’d already had an outstanding weekend at the plate, and his Dust Devils team was well ahead in the contest. 

“My team told me to hack,” he said. “And my teammate Nick (Gollatz) told me if I got anything I liked, to hack away.” 

Wisniewski did exactly that, by sending a two ball, no strike pitch over the fence in left-center for a solo home run that helped seal an 11-0 victory over the Locked In Baseball Expos and the title in Flemington. 

Wisniewski was 1-for-2 with three runs scored in the game, including a steal of home as part of a successful first-and-third play.

For the weekend, he was 7-for-11 with six RBI. He also pitched a two-hitter to beat the Central Jersey Rebels-KS, 8-0, in the semifinals. 

For his efforts, he was selected tournament co-MVP along with teammate Kollin Klinger, who closed out his own impressive weekend by pitching a three-hitter in the final. Klinger struck out eight and walked none. 

The Dust Devils, from Kennett Square, Pa., were 5-0 on the weekend, with a staggering 53-3 run differential. It was their first visit of the season to ‘The Nation.’ Overall, they are 18-1-1 in 2024 and boast 13 straight wins. 

“I love Diamond Nation,” said Wisniewski, whose MVP award was his first. “I love the fields, I love the community and it’s a beautiful place. It felt amazing to get the MVP. I didn’t think I was going to get it.”

He helped his team take a 3-0 lead in the top of the first against the Expos, who entered the final with a 3-0 record and 35-2 run difference. 

Gollatz led off with a walk and Klinger was hit by a pitch. Wisniewski reached on an error that scored Gollatz and sent Klinger to second. D.J. Moulden followed with a single that scored Klinger and advanced Wisniewski to third. 

Moulden was out in a rundown between first and second and a strikeout was followed by a walk to Josh Edwards. A double steal scored Wisniewski with the third run.

The lead stretched to 4-0 in the second inning after Billy Messick singled to right field with one out, stole two bases and scored on Ian Faber’s single into left field.

The Dust Devils scored five more in the third. Klinger led off with a single to shortstop, Wisniewski was hit by a pitch and Moulden hit an RBI single to center. Brice Moore followed that with a three-run home run to center. Edwards singled, and he eventually scored when Jacob Fisher hit a one-out sacrifice fly to center.

Wisniewski’s leadoff homer in the fifth was followed by Moore’s second blast of the game, a one-out shot that produced an 11 run lead. 

Klinger allowed a two-out single in the bottom of the inning to Bruno Venturelli before a ground out to second base ended the game via the mercy rule.

“My curveball was working,” Klinger said. “I was just trying to do the basics. This was a lot of fun, with a lot of good competition.” 

“I love my team and I love baseball,” Wisniewski said. “It’s great playing with them.”

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