PORTLAND, Maine – The battle for Elias Cup V Sunday at 1 p.m. EDT on ESPN promises to be electric as the hometown-favorite L.L. Bean Portland Lumberjacks try to unseat the defending champion Shipyard Dallas Strikers as the L.L.Bean PBA League competition concludes at Bayside Bowl.
Sunday’s Elias Cup finals will involve a lot of strategy between Strikers’ player-manager Norm Duke and Portland manager Tim Mack as they match up players for the singles, doubles and Baker trios matches – each worth one point – leading into the three-point five-player Baker team finale. If the contest winds up in a tie, the Elias Cup will be settled based on a one-ball sudden-death roll-off.
The Strikers, behind Duke and his team of Tommy Jones, Bill O’Neill, Rhino Page and B.J. Moore, advanced to the finals thanks to a sudden-death roll-off win over Lee Auto Malls L.A. X and a semifinal round sweep of the Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen.
The Lumberjacks, on the other hand, had to win in sudden-death in both of their preliminary matches, knocking off the Barbasol Motown Muscle and the Live + Work in Maine Silver Lake Atom Splitters. Mack’s roster of Wes Malott, Ryan Ciminelli, Kyle Troup, Bryon Smith and “Lumberjill” Liz Johnson will make their first Elias Cup finals appearance.
Duke and friends won the 2016 Elias Cup on the basis of Duke’s victory over Marshall Kent in the singles match for one point, followed by the Strikers’ 204-180 victory over the GEICO New York City WTT KingPins in the three-point Baker team finale. The KingPins won single points in the doubles and trios matches, but ultimately Dallas won the cup, 4-2.
In addition to the ESPN telecast, the finals also will be streamed simultaneously on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app.