The 13U Greenwich Cardinals rode a 10 game winning streak, including 3 play-off games, into the Greater Hudson Valley League Championship game against the Larchmont Lions Sunday afternoon at Rogers Park in Danbury.
Greenwich entered the play-off tournament as the number 2 seed with an 11-5 regular season record.
Larchmont was the number 4 seed playing great baseball in the play-off series. Larchmont beat the number 1 seed North Salem Friday night to advance into the Championship game.
“The boys have played hard all season long; three of our losses were by one run,” said Greenwich coach Mike Parisi. “This team is a gritty bunch that never gives in.”
The strategy for the championship game was the same formula the team used all season; use several pitchers to keep the opponent off balance and play strong defense. Starting pitcher Jake Shredders, mid relief Justin Zych and closer Toby Hirsch did a great job Sunday of keeping a strong hitting Larchmont team off balance.
“The pitchers were very effective in creating ground balls and pop ups,” catcher Drew Kral said.
Great outfield play by Owen Colligan, Mark Thibault and Nick Bianchi was a key factor in stopping Larchmont from producing any big innings.
The infield played equally as strong including several great stops and throws from third baseman Brendan Frost.
Second baseman Garret Fantini and First baseman TJ Abbazia made several strong plays on the right side of the diamond including an inning ending 6-4-3 double play that stopped a Larchmont rally in the third inning.
Offensively, the cards were sparked by lead off hitter Kral 3/4 3 runs and Thibault 2/4 2 runs who set the table for big bats Shredders 2-4 and Abbazia 3-4 including 2 long doubles.
“The entire line up came to the plate ready to hit the ball today. When you put the ball in play good things happen,” Parisi said.
Email news tips to Greenwich Free Press editor Leslie.Yager@GreenwichFreePress.com
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