It was simple math for the Leavenworth Diamond Jaxx on Wednesday.
Win two in a row and earn a shot at a American Legion AAA Zone Tournament championship. Lose and the season was over.
So, after dispatching Atchison 6-4 in the semifinals earlier in the evening, the Jaxx faced Manhattan for the second straight day. Manco had dismantled the Leavenworth squad 11-0 the night before.
Due to a late start, around 9 p.m., the game ventured deep into the night. By 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, the Jaxx were facing an 8-3 deficit. At 12:30 a.m. Thursday, their fate seemed much brighter when Judson Cole smashed an RBI double in the ninth, scoring two runs and forcing extra innings.
And at 1:06 a.m., the Jaxx completely reversed their fortunes when Cole spanked another RBI double, giving the team a 9-8 win.
The victory pushed the squads to a decisive championship finale, which was scheduled for Thursday before being rained out. It will now be held tonight at 6:30 p.m. inside Sportsfield.