DISTRICT I LITTLE LEAGUE: RIDGEFIELD 8, DARIEN 0 Ridgefield no hits Dairen in District I opener
DARIEN — Things couldn’t have gone much better for Ridgefield in its District I pool play opener Wednesday.
Three pitchers combined to no-hit Darien and there was more than enough offense for Ridgefield in an 8-0 win at McGuane Field in Darien.
“You can’t really ask for more,” Ridgefield coach Mike Scarlett said. “The three guys who took the mound pounded the strike zone, the defense made plays for them. We talk about executing in all areas and we did, we ran the bases well, we made some big plays behind the pitchers and (Darien) is the defending champion in the age division so that’s the ideal start.”
Starter Felix Maisonet III went the first four, walking three and striking out six. Jacob Voeilmicke came in for 1.2 innings and Ben D’Antonio threw just one pitch to record the final out in the sixth.
“It definitely feels better to start off the tournament well,” Maisonet said. “All the pitchers were great, Ben had that one pitch out to close it. I had good supportive defense out there, so that definitely helped.”
Offensively, Ridgefield did all its damage in two innings.
An RBI single from Mason Smith and a sac fly from Matthew Ciminiello got the scoring started in the second and Lucas Carfi blew the game open with a grand slam later in the inning.
“That felt good, but I couldn’t get there without my teammates getting on base first,” said Carfi, who just missed another homer later in the game. “It was really helpful for the team when they got on base. I figured a base hit would score them, so anything was good there.”
Ridgefield tacked two more on in the third with John Michael Macko scoring on a wild pitch and Ciminiello added a bloop RBI single.
Defensively, Darien was able to cut down two runners at the plate via rundowns and offensively had runners at second and third twice but were unable to capitalize.
“That’s the game with these new bats, they changed all the bats this year and it’s a defense and base-running game now,” Darien coach Terry Bock said. “…when you don’t have giant sluggers, which we’ve got a couple, but not top to bottom, then yeah, you have to grind it out.”
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Maisonet III, Ridgefield. The starting pitcher threw the first four innings of Ridgefield’s combined no-hitter Wednesday.
“A lot of Darien’s hitters are very strong and can get the barrel on the pitches so the one thing I had to do was make sure they’re off balance,” the righty said. “My curveball early on wasn’t working very well so I had to mix in the changeup as well. Overall, I think this is very team oriented, so it’s good.”
The biggest thing to remember for both teams is that it was just the first game of pool play, and come Friday both have to turn the page.
“We’re very familiar with every team in this district, so we don’t want to look ahead to a playoff game we haven’t qualified for yet,” Scarlett said. “We know Stamford American is going to be a really tough team and they have a lot of good players, so we’re going to have to stay focused.”
Bock’s mindset is a little simpler.
“They’re 12,” he laughed. “They’ll be fine.”
RIDGEFIELD 8, DARIEN 0
DARIEN 000 000—0 0 0
RIDGEFIELD 062 00x—8 10 0
Batteries: D—Jack Wilkos (L), Nico Stefanoni (2), Andrew Olson (3), Caleb Seiden (4), Will Donnelly (5) and Jack Cunningham, Wilkos; R—Felix Maisonet III (W), Jacob Voeilmicke (5), Ben D’Antonio and D’Antonio, John Michael Macko. Highlights: R—Felix Maisonet, Jacob Voeilmicke and Ben D’Antonio combined for a no-hitter. Lucas Carfi hit a grand slam.