Making the Warwick community proud

Warwick. Warwick 11U All Stars win District 19 championship

| 24 Jul 2023 | 08:19

Warwick’s 11U baseball team are District 19 champions, defeating Newburgh, Washingtonville and Cornwall, while displaying perseverance and sportsmanship as they represented their community.

Coached by Travis Podolec, Chris Daly, Dom Blandino and Chris Payne, each of the 13 athletes played remarkably and worked together to contribute to the success of the team.

Powerful pitchers

A special combination of talented pitchers allowed this team to limit the amount of runs scored by their competition. Chance Daly pitched almost all six innings against Washingtonville, allowing only a single run.

In game two of the tournament, Jack Starr pitched an outstanding four innings, allowing only one run. Lucas LaPenna pitched two innings of shutout relief with four strikeouts to close out the fiercely competitive District Championship game that went into extra innings.

Bats come alive

The team displayed outstanding hitting performances, often putting the ball into play at crucial times.

Tanner Wadeson’s RBI double gave Warwick the lead against Washingtonville, adding to Ben Payne’s single and double with an RBI in the same game.

The team then faced Newburgh where Mickey Reilly went 2 for 2 with an RBI.

In the District Championship game, Dylan Connington had two hits and a game-tying RBI in the fifth inning. In the same game, John Powers went 3 for 3, knocking in James Mikos with a walk-off single in the eighth inning.

Dynamite defense

The spectacular plays in the outfield set this team apart with numerous diving grabs and precise throws to shut down the competition.

Mickey Reilly dove for a ball at shortstop to make the final out of a game with a throw to first base.

AJ Podolec ended one inning by making a diving play at shortstop.

Ben Payne made a running catch in foul territory to end an inning with the bases loaded.

Dylan Connington also made a diving grab at second base.

Finally, Avery Eschmann, starting catcher, held the team together behind the plate in every game. Avery threw out three runners on steal attempts and tagged two runners out at home plate.

Sectional Tournament

After winning districts and advancing to the Sectional Tournament, James Mikos had a game-tying RBI against Ossining in the first game.

Logan Ziegler went 3 for 3 in that game with a double, two singles and an RBI.

The team then faced Harrison, with starting pitcher AJ Podolec going six innings and only giving up one earned run while striking out four.

Peter Blandino came into the game relief pitching with the bases loaded and no outs in the seventh inning. Blandino got all three outs without allowing a run to score.

This team not only showed remarkable athleticism and skill, they were defined by their perseverance and heart. The spirit in which the team competed was phenomenal. Faced with many tense situations, the team always rose to the challenge, never quit and gave it their all in every play.

They trusted each other to make plays in critical moments and supported one another throughout the tournament. Their attitudes toward the other teams was admirable and their sportsmanship was a class act that has made the Warwick community proud.