WILLIMANTIC, July 28 – Madison pitcher Chase Geremia got it done on the mound and at the plate in Sunday’s Little League baseball tournament game at Lower Legion field in Willimantic.
Geremia struck out three and allowed just three hits in 2.2 innings of work on the mound and hit a grand slam home run in the second inning to lift Madison in the final of the Connecticut Major Division tournament in a 6-2 win over Simsbury.
Madison (12-1) advances to the final of the double-elimination tournament on Tuesday evening. Simsbury (10-2) or Max Sinoway-North Haven will have to beat Madison twice to win the state championship. Simsbury faces Max Sinoway (10-2) on Monday in an elimination game beginning at 6 p.m. in Willimantic.
Madison took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a bases-loaded single to center field. But Simsbury center fielder Maxwell Williams threw out a Madison runner trying to score from second base at home plate with a bullet throw to catcher Patrick Matyczyk to get out of the inning.
Simsbury tied the game at 1-1 in the second inning on Will Gill’s two-out RBI single to left field. Williams led off the inning with a walk and moved to third base on a pair of infield outs before he scored the tying run.
Madison took control in the bottom of the second inning. Madison loaded the bases with a walk, single and a batter getting hit by a pitch. Geremia’s two-out grand slam to right field gave Madison a commanding 5-1 lead.
Simsbury got a run back in the third inning on Lucas Gifford’s RBI single with two outs and the bases loaded. Gifford was 2-for-3 with one RBI for Simsbury. But Madison reliever Christian Kells got a strikeout to end the inning and the threat.
Kells pitched 3.1 innings of relief, allowing three hits and striking out six to pick up the save for Madison.
Simsbury starting pitcher Will Gills (3-1) pitched 2.2 innings and allowed four hits and walked three. He struck out two. Reliever Shane Butler gave up one hit and struck out two in 2.1 innings of work.
Madison 6, Simsbury 2
Simsbury (10-2) 011 000 — 2-6-0
Madison (12-1) 141 00x — 6-5-0
Will Gills, Shane Butler (3) and Patrick Matyczyk; Chase Geremia, Christian Kells and unknown; WP: Geremia; LP: Gills (3-1); Save: Kells; 2B: Alexander M. (M), HR: Geremia (M)
Major Division baseball (ages 11-12)
Final Four tournament (double-elimination)
At Willimantic (Lower Legion Field)
Saturday, July 27
Game 1: Madison (D9) 5, Brooklyn/Pomfret (D12) 3
Game 2: Simsbury (D6) 5, Max Sinoway-North Haven (D4) 4 (8)
Sunday, July 28
Game 3: Madison 6, Simsbury 2, winner advances to final
Game 4: Max Sinoway 3, Brooklyn/Pomfret 1, Brooklyn/Pomfret eliminated
Monday, July 29
Game 5: Max Sinoway-North Haven vs. Simsbury, 6 p.m., losing team eliminated
Tuesday, July 30
Game 6, Final: Winner game 5 vs. Madison, 6 p.m.
Wednesday, July 31
Game 7: Final: Winner game 5 vs. Madison, 6 p.m., if necessary