A pair of one-run losses end season for All-Star team
MANCHESTER, July 30 – Avon’s Major Division All-Star baseball team came up two runs shy of playing for an opportunity to compete for a state championship. Avon dropped two games in last week’s Section II state tournament, each by one run.
The Glastonbury National’s hit a home run in the bottom of the sixth inning to earn a 5-4 victory and in the final game of the six-team round-robin tournament, Ellington outlasted Avon, 1-0. Ellington and Glastonbury National, who were each 4-1, played for the Section II championship. The winners from Section II and Section I play a best-of-three championship series to determine a state champion.
Still, it was a thrilling run for the Avon, which posted a record of 8-3 this summer. The game that sent folks home with the most smiles was the East Lyme game that Avon rallied to win 10-7 in seven innings. Avon trailed by five runs, 7-2, in the fifth inning. But Patrick McKearney hit a three-run home run and Chris Moss added a two-run homer to tie the game at 7-7.
Avon came home a winner after Stephen Griffin belted a three-run home run in the bottom of the seventh. Stephen Carrier also hit a solo home run earlier in the game for Avon. Carrier, John Burdick and Chris Dumais made some key defensive plays to help secure the win.
The win left Avon, Glastonbury National, Ellington and East Lyme with 3-1 records going into the final day of the tournament. With Avon facing Ellington and Glastonbury tangling with East Lyme, the winners would advance to the Section II title game.
But Ellington pitcher Ryan Bialy was too strong. He allowed just two hits and struck out 10 to lead Ellington to a 1-0 victory. Ellington pushed its lone run across in the fifth inning. Joe Lesile led off the inning with a single and move to second base on a wild pitch.
But Avon pitcher Patrick Albanese took a deep breath and got the next two batters out. However, Ellington’s Winston Chow ripped an RBI double to score Lesile. Albanese was outstanding on the mound, striking out nine and walking just one. He scattered five hits.
Avon 11, Norwich 0 (4): Avon opened the tournament with an easy shutout victory over the District 11 champions. Patrick McKearney was 2-for-3 with a pair of home runs while Luke Meaney added a solo home run. Patrick Albanese struck out seven in three innings of work and didn’t allow a runner to reach base. Jordan Levine, John Burdick, Kevin Rosato, Chris Dumais and Alex Zacchio had key hits.
Glastonbury National 5, Avon 4: Ben Suski hit a home run in the top of the sixth inning to tie the game at 4-4. But Glastonbury had a home run of their own in the bottom of the sixth to earn the win. Steven Carrier was 2-for-3 for Avon while Patrick McKearney and Patrick Albanesi each had home runs.
Avon 16, Guilford 1 (5): Patrick Albanesi struck out 12 batters and didn’t allow a hit over five innings to lead Avon to the win. Stephen Carrier was 3-for-4 with two doubles and a walk while Albanesi had a single and three walks.
Manager: T.J. O’Connor
Coaches: Rick Griffin, Ken Levine
State tourney appearances
Avon 10, Norwich American 3
Avon 9, Vernon 4
East Hartford Eastern 5, Avon 4
Semifinal: Clinton def. Avon
South Windsor 12, Avon 0
Clinton 9, Avon 0
Avon 3, Glastonbury American 1
Avon 3, East Lyme 2
Avon 10, Tolland 1
Avon 2, Haddam Killingworth 0
Killingly 7, Avon 4
Section II final: Killingly 3, Avon 0
Avon 11, Thompson 1
Avon 1, Coginchaug 0
Waterford North 6, Avon 2
Vernon 4, Avon 3
Glastonbury National 6, Avon 5
Baseball: Avon shuts out Thomaston to win District 6 title