Chicago Wildcats win SpamTown Challenge

Published 5:06 pm Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Chicago Wildcats pulled off two dramatic wins to come away with the SpamTown Challenge trophy Sunday at Marcusen Park.

The Wildcats beat the Vee Pak Hawks of Chicago 2-1 in the title game and knocked off Minnetonka 7-6 on a 10th inning walk-off home run by Jeff Harkensee in the semifinals.

“He gave me an 0-2 fast ball on the inside corner and I got a hold of it,” Harkensee said of his homer.

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The Wildcats had to hold off a late Vee Pak rally to win the title game. The Hawks had the bases loaded with one out when Wildcat shortstop Christian Hickman fielded a grounder and turned an unassisted double play to end the game.

“We just kept working hard and good things happened for us,” Harkensee said. “We had a few guys pitching on three days rest, but it was nice to beat the Hawks, who we split the season series with.”

Tony Huntley of the Wildcats was selected tournament MVP. He had five hits in the tourney.

The Wildcats, who also played in the Challenge last season, make two road trips each summer, but Austin is the farthest place they travel to.

“We got here on Wednesday and it was a fun five days. It’s a good facility and the tournament is set up real well,” Harkensee said.

The Hawks beat Chaska 11-1 to get to the title game.