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Biscuits stun Stars to repeat in SL

Pedroza's three-run homer in ninth secures second straight title
September 16, 2007
The Montgomery Biscuits won their second straight Southern League championship Sunday, edging the Huntsville Stars, 4-3, on Sergio Pedroza's three-run homer in the top of the ninth inning.

"We're going nuts," Pedroza said. "We're going to get on that bus and be loud. It don't get better than this."

With the Biscuits trailing, 3-1, Chris Nowak hit a leadoff single in the ninth. After right fielder Brendan Katin made a diving catch to retire John Jaso, Gabriel Martinez singled to put runners at the corners and Pedroza drilled a first-pitch fastball over the left-field wall for his second postseason blast.

"This one tops every homer I've ever hit," the 23-year-old designated hitter said. "I'd remembered seeing [Stars reliever Luis Pena] in Brevard [County]. I ended up getting the pitch I was looking for, and I ended up hitting it out."

Pedroza spent the entire regular season with Class A Advanced Vero Beach, where he hit .286 with a team-leading 22 homers and 70 RBIs in 116 contests. He made his Double-A debut during the South Division Finals against Mississippi.

"I got my shot a little later," he said. "It couldn't have came at a better time."

Nowak went 4-for-4 with an RBI single in the first for Montgomery, which was 3-52 when trailing after eight innings during the season.

The Biscuits defeated the Stars in four games to claim the crown last year and are the first Southern League team to capture back-to-back titles since the Montgomery Rebels won three straight championships from 1975-77.

"I'm glad we did what we did. They're great ballplayers, every single one of them," Pedroza said. "I can't wait to come back and play with these guys again."

The ninth-inning rally made a winner of reliever Brian Henderson (1-1), who struck out two in the eighth. Tim Corcoran pitched around a hit and a walk in the ninth, getting Steve Moss to ground into a game-ending double play.

"He is nasty," Pedroza said of Corcoran. "We knew he was going to handle his business."

Montgomery starter Richard De Los Santos yielded three unearned runs on five hits and two walks with two strikeouts over six frames.

Katin doubled and Lou Palmisano walked in the fifth before both runners scored on an error by center fielder Fernando Perez. Alcides Escobar then smacked an RBI single to put the Stars ahead, 3-1.

Pena (0-1) suffered the loss after surrendering three runs on four hits and a walk in the ninth. Starter Steve Hammond gave up a run on four hits over seven frames, walking one and tying a career high with nine strikeouts.

Marissa Rega is a contributor to