07/23/2017 9:40 AM
The first two rounds of the 2017 SFCBL playoffs have concluded and now the finals match up is set; a rematch from last season. The #1 seed Pompano Beach Clippers will face the #2 seed Delray Beach Lightning. Last year the Clippers got the best of the Lightning by defeating them in two games to win their second SFCBL Championship.
The Clippers go into this game with a record of 23-9 which is a one win improvement from last season and are currently ranked #10 in the national summer collegiate baseball poll. The Lightning enter the finals with a record of 25-12 which is a five win improvement from 2016 and are currently ranked #19 in the national summer collegiate baseball poll. Neither team seemed to be rusty from their first round byes.
Clippers players to watch in the final three game series are outfielder Christian Coipel (Florida International) who is riding a 9 game hitting streak, infielder C.J. Alexander is another player to look for as he hit .349 with three home runs and a team leading 24 RBI's and outfielder Cole Haring (Baylor) has hit .330 with two home runs and 17 RBI's. The Clippers will definitely be relying on their bats to lead them to a third SFCBL Championship.
The Lightning players to watch include shortstop Michael Perez (University of Miami) who has the second highest batting average in the league at .406, infielder Andru Summerall (Florida Atlantic) is also a player who can cause a lot of issues for the Clippers as he has hit .371 with a team leading 4 HR's and 27 RBI's. The Lightning are a more balanced team, in the sense that they rely equally on pitching and hitting to win games.
Other notable pitchers include Clippers RHP Andy Rivera (Middle Tennessee State) who routinely runs it up to 94 MPH and Colin Coates (Ole Miss) who is the expected starter for game 2.
It looks to be quite the match up going into Sunday as these are two of the best summer collegiate teams in the country that have a history of butting heads. Dan Taggert (Adelphi University) is the expected starter for game 2 of the double header for the Lightning.