Westport Junior Legion makes playoff push
Published 10:41 pm, Wednesday, July 7, 2010
The Westport Junior Legion squad, coached by Mike Navarra and Jason Bedient, has won five of its last seven games to raise its record to 11-7 and move into third place in 10-team, Zone 4 standings. More importantly, Westport is now well positioned to make the Connecticut Junior Legion playoffs, slated for the third week in July.
Westport first swept a three-game series with Bridgeport with Turi Latella going the distance in the opener. Jonathan Friedman (double, single, 2 RBI, run) and James Frusciante (two walks, double, RBI, two runs) spearheaded the offense in a 7-4 come-from-behind win. Game two was a 2-2 nail-biter until the bottom of the sixth when pitcher Alex Bauer singled, Ben Greenberg bunted him to second, a groundout advanced him to third, and a shot by Chris Speer bounced off the shortstop's glove for the go-ahead run. Bauer then struck out the side to preserve the complete-game 3-2 win.
Westport pitcher Jarrett Goodness was perfect through 5 and 2/3 innings in Game 3 at Seaside Park. However, Bridgeport hung tough and Westport had a slim 4-2 lead in the in the bottom of the sixth and Bridgeport had the bases loaded.
Friedman came in and struck out Bridgeport for the third out. Seven walks by the Bridgeport reliever in the seventh sealed the deal, 11-4. Coming up big for Westport were Zach Mitchell (two hits, two walks, RBI, two runs) and Nick Kiedaisch (double, single, two walks, RBI, run).
Westport then took two of three from Darien-New Canaan. In the opener, Darien led 8-2 when Friedman entered the game in the third.
With one out, Bryant Lendrim (four hits, RBI, run) initiated the hit parade as nine of the next 12 batters reached safely, seven of them scoring. Westport would tack on another six runs for a 15-8 win. Frusciante pitched the final scoreless frame.
In game two at New Canaan's Mead Park, Speer hurled a 4-0 shutout. The game was scoreless through four when Mitchell walked, stole second and third, then came home on a balk.
Marco Romero started the fifth by reaching on an an error, Frusciante singled, and after a wild pitch, Thomas Cirillo singled in Romero. Mitchell walked to load the bases, and Mitch Gallagher walked in Frusciante. Lendrim singled in a run in the seventh for Westport's last run.
In the final game against Darien, Westport had 17 base runners but only three scored in a 5-3 loss. Darien walked the first three batters of the game but Westport was plagued by two force outs at the plate and scored only one run in the inning on a Frusciante (single, double, two walks, rbi, run) RBI walk.
After a tough four-run bottom of the first inning, Bauer allowed only one more run and kept Westport in the game.
Westport lost 4-3 at Wilton-Weston in nine innings on Monday. Mitchell (double, single, two walks, two steals, two runs) doubled in the third, stole third, and came home on a Kiedaisch single for a 1-0 lead. In the fifth, Gallagher reached on an errant throw and took second, Mitchell bunt singled him to third, and pitcher Jimmy Kopack singled him in. Mitchell walked to lead off the seventh, raced to third on a botched pickoff attempt, and Kopack plated him again for a 3-0 lead.
Wilton tied it in the bottom of the seventh and won it off a reliever with a two-out bases loaded walk in the bottom of the ninth.
Westport plays at Wilton tonight at 7:30 p.m., hosts Greenwich tomorrow at 5:30 p.m. at Wakeman field in a makeup game and hosts Wilton on Saturday at Staples High School at 10 a.m. Westport closes out the regular season with three games each against Stamford and Trumbull.