by David Greenleaf
Milford swept five games to claim its first ever State American Legion baseball championship in a rain-plagued tournament that featured five extra inning games. Milford broke a 5-5 tie with a run in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat Rocky Hill-Cromwell-Portland in the championship game as tournament MVP Christian Baglini earned his second win of the tourney in relief.
Milford’s run to the championship included a 5-4 15-inning marathon win over fellow Zone 2 opponent Branford in a game that had to be moved to an alternate site at Trumbull High School due tot he backlog of games caused by rain in the opening days of the tournament. Milford also scored a thrilling 2-0 win over top seeded Greenwich and a 4-1 victory over previously unbeaten Avon that propelled it to the championship game.
RCP advanced to the championship round after suffering a heartbreaking 4-3 loss to Montville in its second game when Montville scored four times in the bottom of the ninth. RCP went on to defeat Orange, Branford, Avon and Greenwich to reach the finals.
Baglini earned MVP honors with a .444 batting average to back up his stellar play at shortstop and was the winning pitcher in a relief role in two of the Milford victories. B.J. McNaughton of RCP, who was 2-0 in the tourney with a 0.58 ERA was named the tourney’s Outstanding Pitcher and RCP outfielder Pat Sirois was the tourney’s leading hitter with a .514 average.
Milford, which finished third in Zone 2 int he regular season, became the seventh team to win a state championship after advancing out of the play-in tournament. RCP also advanced through the play-ins, marking the first time in history that no zone regular season champions were in the tournament final.
Both Championship games can be viewed on www.sportingnewsct.com at any time
and will be rebroadcast periodically on television on CPTV beginning this week as follows:
Monday, August 6th Senior State Championship Game 7PM
Milford vs. RCP
Tuesday, August 7th Junior State Championship 7PM
Stamford vs. Southington
CPTV Television: Cablevision channel 139
Charter 223 & 224
Comcast 185, 187 & 744
Thames Valley 87
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