Darien American holds off Stamford American in Pool B play

DARIEN -- Darien American Little League pitcher Fin Batson caught a break. He only had to face Stamford American slugger Trey Gorey three times in Friday's 11-12-year-old District 1 All-Star Tournament game.

Gorey blasted a pair of monstrous two-run homers but Batson kept the rest of his opponent's lineup in check as Darien American held on for a 6-4 victory at McGuane Field.

"In this heat Fin stayed focused and was really tough out there," Darien manager Bill Van de Graaf said. "He kept them off-balance and hit his spots. This was really a must game for us because we didn't want to drop to 0-2."

Darien American, which lost to three-time defending District 1 champ North Stamford on Tuesday, moved to 1-1 in B Pool play.

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Batson struck out six, walked one and allowed six hits.

"Aside from two pitches, he pitched a great game," Van de Graaf said.

Gorey blasted a two-run homer off Batson in the fourth and then added another two-run shot in the sixth. Both homers cleared the fence by 60 or 70 feet. Gorey did strike out in the second inning.

"Trey was phenomenal," Stamford American manager Chris Brecciano said of the 12-year-old. "He's been an all-star since he was 9. As a matter of fact, he hit a homer over the fence when he was 9 in the state (9-10) tournament. You don't see too many 9-year-olds do that.

"But we have to work on our defense," Brecciano added. "We made too many mistakes and a good team like Darien will capitalize on that."

Stamford made three errors while two other misplays were not ruled errors. But if Gorey's bat made the most noise Friday, Justin Jordan's two-run homer for Darien in the first inning may have made the biggest impact.

"The two-run homer was huge," Van de Graaf said. "Believe it or not, it's his first one of the year. It really relaxed everybody."

Darien added two more in the third. A Stamford error aided the rally but Ethan Ehlers, Emmet Sheehan and Justin Van de Graaf had singles.

After Gorey's first two-run homer in the fourth, Darien moved ahead 6-2 with two in the fifth. Two Stamford errors, plus singles by Jordan and Sean McKay fueled the uprising.

Jordan and Ehlers had two hits apiece to lead Darien.

Besides Gorey, Nick Romaniello had a single and a triple for Stamford.

Darien American 6, Stamford American 4


DARIEN AMERICAN 202 02X--6 8 0

Records: Stamford American 0-1; Darien American 1-1.

Batteries: SA--Lenis Baer (L) and Danny Collazo; DA--Fin Batson (W) and Emmet Sheehan. Doubles: DA--Ethan Ehlers. Triples: SA--Nick Romaniello. Home Runs: SA--Trey Gorey 2; DA--Justin Jordan.