By Paul Augeri
As Rocky Hill/Cromwell/Portland prepares for its opener in the American Legion regional qualifying tournament, Middletown is aiming for a strong finish in Zone 3 and improved seeding in the upcoming state tournament.
Post 75 is coming off a 3-2 win over Ellington in eight innings on Friday that boosting its record to 14-6. Tyler Powell’s RBI single ended up making a winner out of reliever Tiernan Powers, who struck out three in 1 1/3 innings. Alex Mach turned in another excellent, allowing an unearned run on five hits with 11 strikeouts.
Middletown’s remaining zone opponents are East Hartford/Manchester (6-12) on Wednesday at Palmer Field (7pm) and Tri-County (11-7-1) on Friday at Memorial Field in Marlborough (5:45).
Scheduled around those games are two non-zone contests at Palmer Field: Monday versus Hamden and Sunday versus Avon.
The 32-team, single-elimination state tournament starts Aug. 3. Qualifiers and pairings are expected to be revealed on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Zone 3 champion RCP meets Zone 2 runner-up Wallingford on Monday at Cromwell High (5:45) in the double-elimination regional qualifier. The field was cut to eight teams after Saturday’s play-in results – Greenwich eliminated West Hartford 7-4 and Zone 3 runner-up NCL ousted Norwich 3-0.
Ryan Robb gets the start for Post 105 (16-3), the third seed. The winner will meet either NCL or Zone 2 champion Madison on Tuesday, while the losing team faces elimination against Meriden of Zone 1 or Zone 4 East champ Fairfield, also on Tuesday.
THIS AND THAT
- AJ Quinn will be a worthy successor to Middletown 19U catcher Mike Garofalo at some point. Quinn is a rising sophomore at Middletown High who knows how to keep the ball in front of him. As his arm catches up to his defensive game, he should be a nice fit going forward.
Quinn caught his brother, Ryan, in a 3-0 win over Enfield last week at Palmer Field. Ryan Quinn, a rising senior at MHS, pitched seven shutout innings, walked three and struck out four. And 14-year-old Luke Weisenburg recorded his first hit at the 19U level.
- Rising Xavier senior Eamon Burke won the annual Citizens Summer Fun Run 5K on Wednesday in Middletown. Burke ran a 5-flat pace on the Main Street/Wesleyan course to finish in 15:31, five seconds ahead of runner-up Middletown High/Quinnipiac graduate Ben Lanza.