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Band Of Baseball Brothers

U11 team repeats as

District 29 travel champs

The boys and coaches of the Garden City U11 District baseball team delivered another District 29 title last Monday night at the Floral Park Recreation Center proving that in a town where Spring sports is somewhat dominated by lacrosse, the National pastime is alive and well. Garden City took the championship home by virtue of a dominating 9-2 victory over Franklin Square.

The boys entered the double elimination tournament with a bit of a target on their backs as nine of the players on this squad were on last year’s U10 team that also brought Garden City a District 29 championship. Knowing that each of the teams in the tourney would be looking to take them down, the Garden City nine played solid baseball both offensively and defensively.

The team opened up the tournament with two big wins; a tight 7-5 extra inning victory over Franklin Square and a crushing 13-4 win over New Hyde Park. The two wins put them in great shape as their challenger would have to beat them two times.

After losing to Garden City in their second game of the tournament, Franklin Square battled back with three straight victories of their own to set up a great final series. Franklin Square kept their streak going by topping Garden City in a tight 6-5 game to set up the Championship final on Monday night.

The championship victory was keyed by solid pitching from Garrett Zander and Jake Fraher. Zander tossed the first three innings and stayed on top of the dangerous Franklin Square hitters. Then it was Fraher doing what he has done all tournament, coming in for the final three to slam the door shut and deliver the championship.   

On the offensive side, the Garden City lineup hit the ball from top to bottom as Joe Macchiarola led off innings three times with hits, Fraher smashed two doubles and TJ Schmitt went 3 for 3 with four big RBI’s.

As coach Joe Macchiarola made a point after the game “every player on this team contributed to this championship – hitting, running, pitching or playing solid defense.”

Delivering for coaches Dan Bautch, Joe Macchiarola and Steve Baymack throughout the tourney with consistent play were Michael Rasquin and Stephen Baymack, who each delivered nine hits in the four games, Shane Ross with a huge extra inning home run, Andrew Luglio keying an early rally to set the tone for the game, Luke Caporicci running the bases like Rickey Henderson, or the excellent defense that outfielders Jackson Bautch and Jeffrey Papazian and infielders Jason Brown and Joseph Griffin exhibited.

The team advanced to the Section 5 double elimination tournament which opened with a game on Saturday, July 13 at Rath Park in Franklin Square against the winner of a game between Mid-Island Little League (Staten Island) and Throgs Neck Little League (Bronx).