These are the results for summer season contests for Wednesday, July 19. For more in-depth coverage, read next week’s Southington Observer.
Southington American Legion Baseball: Following a loss to No. 3 Avon (21-6) in the first game of a double-elimination series in the regional bracket of the 19U state tournament, sixth-seeded Post 72 returned to Buckingham Park and almost advanced to the super regionals after taking the second game, due to forfeiture. However, Southington’s season came to an end following a one-run loss in the third game. It seemed as if Avon wouldn’t need a third game to advance to the super regionals after taking an 8-0 lead in the second game with four runs in the first inning and four in the sixth. But in the bottom of the sixth, Avon’s Jake Coppen replaced Kyle Emry on the mound, and the suspicion that Coppen was an ineligible player was brought to the attention of the umpires by Southington coach Marc Verderame. According to the American Legion Baseball 2017 Rulebook, section D of Rule 6 (Team and Player Certification) states the following: “The American Legion believes team loyalty is a key ingredient for any team sport. Dual participation shall no way interfere with a player’s responsibility to his American Legion Baseball team. Once department championship tournament play has begun, the department baseball chairman cannot grant permission to participate in other baseball events, baseball tournaments, exhibition games, showcases or combines. Any player missing any game of an American Legion national tournament because he participated in another baseball event, exhibition game, showcase or combine shall be ineligible for post-season tournament play.” Coppen participated in a pitching showcase, and therefore, was ruled as an ineligible player by Zone One chairman, Tim Vincent. Although Southington received a second chance to advance to the super regionals, Avon wasn’t affected by the forfeiture, edging Southington by a run, 4-3, in game three. Again, Avon took an early 4-0 advantage with a pair of runs in the first and runs in the third and fourth. Dan Topper and Josh Panarella led off the sixth with a pair of base hits, and an out later, Brayden Cooney drew a walk. Jake Babon cut the deficit to three by scoring Topper with a RBI single. With two outs and two runners on base, Brandon Kohl drove in Panarella and Cooney with a double into the outfield gap. Verderame gave Babon the green light to score from first as the tying run, but was thrown out on the relay throw to the plate. A pair of groundouts and a strikeout ended Southington’s season in the seventh. Southington finished with five hits. Nick Borkowski (6-1) started on the mound and threw a complete game with a strikeout, allowing five hits, three earned runs, and a walk. Avon was reseeded as the top seed in the super regionals of the North Division of the state tournament and is scheduled to play No. 4 West Hartford (19-9). The other North Division contest features No. 2 Waterford (24-6) against No. 3 South Windsor (18-7). Super regionals are to be played at Muzzy Field in Bristol, and championship game is to be played at Palmer Field in Middletown. Post 72 finished the season at 20-8 overall.
For more in-depth coverage, see our weekly print edition. To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.