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Tri-State Baseball

Daigle helps Bethlehem to force a decisive game three with a 5-4 victory

Bethlehem’s Joe Rupe had a double in Saturday’s win over Tri-Town in the league finals.

Bethlehem pitcher Keegan Daigle struck out 12 batters and allowed just five hits to help Bethlehem beat Tri-Town, 5-4, on Saturday at Municipal Stadium and tie the Tri-State League championship series at 1-1.

The two teams will play for the championship in the decisive game three on Sunday beginning at 2 p.m. at Municipal Stadium.

The Plowboys (21-5) beat the two-time defending league champion Trojans for the third time this season, beating the Trojans (23-3) for the second time in their last three games. Bethlehem is the only team to beat Tri-Town this season.

Bethlehem took a 5-0 lead in the game. The Plowboys took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Jon Wilson walked, moved to second on a single from Greg Campbell (3-for-3) and scored on a RBI single from Matt Mancini.

In the fourth inning, Ricky Descoteaux led off with a double and moved to third on a single from Campbell. Descoteaux scored on an infield ground ball out with Campbell scoring on a RBI double from Joe Rupe for a 3-0 lead.

Bethlehem added two more runs to their ledger in the seventh on Descoteaux’s two-run double that drove in Chase Belisle and Alex James.

Tri-Town added a run in the bottom of the seventh inning on a two-out infield single from Tommy Troy.

The two-time defending champion Trojans rallied again in the bottom of the ninth inning. Austin Patenaude singled and moved to third base on a double from Mike Fabiaschi. (2-for-4). Austin Swanson’s had a two-run single to drive in two runs. Swanson cut the lead to one run, 5-4, scoring on a throwing error.

But that would be as close as Tri-Town would get on this sunny, warm August afternoon.

Tri-Town is looking to become just the second team since the Tri-State League began in 1968 to win three straight league championships. The Torrington Rebels won four in a row from 1992-95.

The Plowboys are looking for their first Tri-State League title since 2010.

It will be the ninth time in the last 12 seasons that the best-of-3 championship series goes to a decisive third game. Tri-Town is 3-2 in game three with victories in 2021, 2018 and 2013 to bring home the championship.

Bethlehem is 4-2 in game three with championship series victories in 2005, 2002, 2001 and 1998.

Bethlehem 5, Tri-Town 4
At Waterbury
Bethlehem (21-5)      100  200  020  — 5-11-1
Tri-Town (23-3)           000  000  013  — 4-8-0
Keegan Daigle, Kyle Blanche (9) and Chase Belise; Bobby Chatfield and Joe Grantmeyer; WP: Daigle; LP: Chatfield; Save: Blanche; 2B: Joe Rupe (B), Evan Scribner (TT), Mike Fabiaschi (TT)

UPDATE: Sunday’s game time was moved to 2 p.m. to give city officials time to prepare the field after rain on Saturday night.

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 40 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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