It was just 360 feet, but for Ryan Seiz it was the trip of a lifetime.
Seiz floated around the Citizens Bank Park bases after blasting a two-run, walk-off homer to carry Suburban One National/Bicentennial to a dramatic, 7-6 win over Lehigh Valley in the Carpenter Cup championship game.
The homer for Seiz, a switch-hitting catcher from Christopher Dock High, put the finishing touches on a wild game. National/Bicentennial trailed 5-0 going into the bottom of the seventh and 6-5 heading into the bottom of the ninth.
Brian Fiocco led off the frame by singling off Joe Candelmo to set the stage for Seiz.
"It was the first pitch and he didn't change the grip in his glove, so I knew a fastball was coming," said Seiz, a junior-to-be who was batting righthanded. "He gave me a high one and that's exactly where I like it."
Josh Patman picked up the win.
Seiz, 16, hadn't homered righthanded all season and estimated he went just 1-for-5 or 1-for-6 from that side of the plate.
"I was just sprinting around the bases," he said, laughing, "and when I was about to touch home plate, I did the helmet flip and jumped into home." *
- Ed Barkowitz