AP NEWS

Newtown punches ticket to 15U Babe Ruth World Series

July 29, 2017

ROCHESTER, N.H.— Mission accomplished.

For the Newtown 15U Babe Ruth team, years of being on the losing end at the New England regionals between the Cal Ripken and Babe Ruth levels were finally vanquished Friday as they booked their place in the World Series. The One-Eyed Cats defeated Pittsfield (Mass.) 7-2 in the semifinals before downing North Providence (R.I.) 12-2 in the final in a five-hour flurry of delirium.

Newtown will travel to Lawrenceburg, Tennessee for the World Series, which takes place August 10-17.

“It’s a sweet situation, the kids have been pumped for this,” said Newtown assistant Todd Vander Howe, who helped lead the team with head coach Chris Petersen at Major League Baseball’s Hall of Fame weekend with close friend Jeff Bagwell. “The kids were completely prepared both mentally and physically. They always respect the game and never took an opponent for granted.”

Shortstop Todd Petersen was named Most Valuable Player of the tournament behind his fielding and bat. Newtown blitzed the competition in Rochester, outscoring its opponents 57-19 in going 6-0.

Jack Mulligan got the start in the final for Newtown, which provided more than enough run support.

“Jack is a workhorse,” Vander Have said. “He threw strikes, mixed pitches outside and inside, and changed speeds. His curveball was there also.”

Newtown fell 12-2 in the New England final at 14U, reversing that Friday. The One-Eyed Cats will finally get their chance at the international competition after reaching the regional tournament five straight years without success.

“The kids have played together since they were 9 years old,” Vander Have said. “They’re all friends and know what they are thinking. They’ve been coached by the same coach, who is an unbelievable baseball mind in Chris Petersen. They’ve learned a lot from him.”