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Brattleboro baserunner Alex McClelland slides safely into home during the fifth inning of their District 2 12-year-old Little League playoff game against Bennington on June 30.

Sports

Post 37 struggles as Post 5 chases Legion leaders

Bellows Falls Post 37 is off to a rough start, and one reason why is that they have been giving up lots of runs early in games.

On June 26, against Rutland Post 31 at Hadley Field, Bellows Falls gave up nine runs in the first inning and Post 31 went on to win, 11-1, in five innings.

The following night at Hadley Field, Brattleboro Post 5 scored five runs in the first inning and four more in the second inning as they rolled to a 17-2 win over Post 37 in six innings.

In the Rutland game, Seth Balch was the losing pitcher for Post 37, and was responsible for 10 of Post 31’s 11 runs in the 2 1/3 innings he was on the mound. Ben Simpson held Post 37 to just one hit over four innings to get the win.

Against Post 5, losing pitcher Rex Hill got lit up by a relentless Brattleboro attack in the first and second innings. Adam Newton had a two-run single in each inning, Jack Pattison hit a two-run single in the first, Dan Petrie and Christian Thomsen each hit an RBI double, and Hunter Beebe drove in a run with a base hit.

Winning pitcher Jeremy Rounds was sharp on the mound for Post 5; he walked two, struck out two, and held Post 37 hitless over three innings.

Bellows Falls got two runs in the fifth inning on a sacrifice fly by Andrew Peloso and an RBI single by Clayton Groenewold, but Brattleboro scored six runs in the sixth inning to end the game as the mercy rule was invoked.

After five straight losses to start the season, Post 37 picked up a pair of wins when they swept a doubleheader at Hadley Field against last-place Randolph Post 9 on June 29. Bellows Falls took the first game, 6-1, and won the nightcap, 9-8.

• While Post 37 is struggling, Post 5 is playing well and with confidence. On June 26 at Tenney Field, Brattleboro beat White River Junction Post 84, 6-5.

Winning pitcher Joe Rafus got off to a shaky start as he gave up a run in the first inning and another run in the second. He then settled down and held Post 84 scoreless in the third and fourth innings.

Post 5 got its first run in the second inning when Rounds was hit by a pitch, got to second on a balk by starting pitcher Grayson Frazier, stole third, and scored on a base hit by Thomsen.

Brattleboro took the lead in the fourth inning. Tyler Millerick started the inning with a walk, and reliever Curtis Barry came in to take over from Frazier. Barry promptly gave up a double to Newton. Rounds followed with an RBI single. Newton scored the go-ahead run on a balk, and Rounds ultimately scored when he stole third and came home on an infield groundout by Beebe.

Alex Bingham came in to pitch the fifth and sixth innings for Post 5 and retired six of the seven total batters he faced. In the sixth, Post 5 picked up two more runs when a fly ball hit by Beebe to right field was misplayed.

Those extra two runs turned out to be very important in the seventh inning. Trailing 6-2, Post 84 came close to completing a comeback.

With one out, Jacob Dwinell singled and Ryan Pepe walked. Thomsen came in to relieve Bingham, and gave up an RBI double to the first batter he faced, Hunter Perkins. Kyle Hamilton then walked and Alex Bushway followed with a two-run double to right to cut the Post 5 lead to 6-5.

The game was in the balance, and Post 5 coach Eric Libardoni decided to go to Newton to get the last two outs. Newton then got Post 84’s Alex Emerson to ground into a double play to end the game.

Post 5 ended the week with a doubleheader split against Lake Region on June 29 at Castleton University. Brattleboro won the first game, 3-0. Newton was the winning pitcher and held Lakes Region to just six hits.

Game two was won by Lakes Region, 6-3. Trailing 3-2, they scored four unanswered runs to beat Post 5. The week ended with Rutland on top of the Southern Division at 7-1, Lakes Region in second at 6-2, and Brattleboro in third at 6-3. Bellows Falls is tied with White River Junction for fifth at 2-5, just a game behind fourth-place Bennington at 3-5.

Little League roundup

• For the past few years, the 12-year-old District 2 tournament has been a two-team affair between Brattleboro and Bennington. This year, Rutland is fielding a team, so the format has been changed.

This year, the three teams will have to play each other twice in the first round. The team with the best record after the first round will be top seed for the second round. The second- and third-seeded teams will then have a one-game playoff, with the winner facing facing the top seed in a best-of-three championship round.

Brattleboro opened the tournament on June 29 at Rutland, and came away with a 14-2 win, but lost to Bennington the following day at South Main Street Field.

After a half-hour lightning delay, Bennington took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when Sean Moriarty reached on a fielder’s choice. and then scored on a fielder’s choice by Dreland Carey.

Brattleboro scored twice in the bottom half of the inning as Alex McClelland and Harper Cutler both had infield hits. McClelland scored on a passed ball and Cutler later came home on a misplayed fly ball.

Cutler, who was also the starting pitcher, kept Bennington off the scoreboard in the second inning, but was responsible for five runs in the third inning and ended up with the loss. A couple of errors and a two-run double by pinch hitter Colby Hill opened the door for Bennington.

John Satterfield relieved Cutler with two outs in the third, and got the final out. Cutler would get one of the runs back when he tripled and scored on a groundout in the bottom half of the inning. McClelland got an infield hit in the fifth and scored on an Evan Wright double to cut the Bennington lead to 7-4.

Bennington got the runs back in the sixth on a misplayed fly ball hit by winning pitcher Vince Kobelia that drove in two runs. The two teams will face each other again on July 5 in Bennington.

• The 11-year-old District 2 Tournament also started over the weekend with a best-of-five series between Brattleboro and Rutland.

Game 1 was in Rutland on June 29, a game that Brattleboro won, 8-1. The two teams met again the next day at South Main Street Field, with Rutland coming out on top, 9-4.

Pitching and defense helped Rutland win Game 2. Second baseman Ronan Duffy had an unassisted double play in the second inning, center field Danny Brown threw out a Brattleboro baserunner at second base, and the game ended with a double play.

As for the pitching, Rutland’s Priyam Patel went five innings to get the win, while Brattleboro starter Sean Cozza struggled through 3 2/3 innings and took the loss.

Rutland scored twice in the first inning, but Brattleboro’s Ryder Leary tied the game in the second with a two-run triple that scored Lucas Speno and Gabe Alexander.

Rutland got two more runs in the third to take the lead, and put the game out of reach with a four-run fourth inning. Once he reached his allotted 90 pitches with two outs, Cozza was relieved by Henry Schwartz, who gave up a two-run double by Patel and an RBI single by Griffin Pomeroy.

Brattleboro got its final two runs on an RBI single by Donovan Hall in the fourth and a fly ball in the sixth inning by Schwartz that scored Leary.

Game 3 of the series is July 6 in Rutland, while Game 4 will be in Brattleboro on July 7. Both games start at 2 p.m.

• The 9-10 All Stars will start their best-of-5 series for the District 2 championship against Bennington. Game 1 is in Bennington on July 6, while Game 2 is in Brattleboro on July 7. Both games start at 11 a.m.

Brattleboro travels to Bennington for Game 3 at 5:30 p.m. on July 10, while Brattleboro is the host for Game 4 on July 13 at 11 a.m. If a Game 5 is needed, it will be played on July 14 at 11 a.m.; the site is to be determined.

Gymnastics classes at the Rec

• The Brattleboro Recreation & Parks Department hosts another session of gymnastics classes for children 3 years old and older to be held at the Gibson Aiken Center, 207 Main St. This summer session will begin the week of July 10 and run through Aug. 7.

The cost of this six-week program is $72 for Brattleboro residents and $87 for non-residents. The classes will run as follows: Ninja ages 5-10: 2:45 to 3:45 p.m.; ages 3-5: 3:45 to 4:30 p.m.; Ages 5-6: 3:45 to 4:45 p.m.; 7+: 4:45 to 5:45 p.m.

For more informationm call 254-5808 or stop by the Recreation & Parks Department Office at 207 Main Street, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to noon or 1 to 5 p.m.

Tournament raises $10,700 for SEVCA

• The 18th annual Southeastern Vermont Community Action (SEVCA) Chipping Away at Poverty golf tournament was held June 14 at the Brattleboro Country Club.

The Tournament co-sponsors — Springfield Housing Authority, Mutual of America, and Sunset Tool, Inc. — along with 19 other major sponsors, 15 other donors, and 19 teams of golfers raised $10,700 to support SEVCA’s essential anti-poverty programs serving low-income individuals and families in Windham and Windsor counties.

No players won the grand prizes this year, but Kevin Brennan came closest to the pin in the Putting Contest final to win a $100 prize.

Mutual of America was the first team, Jam Fuel was second, and Kinney Pike Insurance was third. Joan Mealey was closest to the pin for the women, while Thalia Holmes had the longest drive. Toby Jasmin was closest to the pin for the men and Josh Marcell had the longest drive.

Senior bowling roundup

• At the midpoint of the spring/summer season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League, The Great Lakes (34-11) are holding steady in first place, with BDR (31-14) still in second.

DDL (29-17) is in third, followed by JKL (26-19), Team 5 (24-22), 3 Stooges (22-23), MNR (21-24), Tres Amigos (19-26), Stars & Strikes and Stayin’ Alive (both 18-27), The Dentists (17-28), and Tornadoes (12-33).

Debbie Kolpa had the women’s high handicap game (259) and series. Stan Kolpa (251) had the men’s high handicap game, while Wayne Randall (697) had the high handicap series. JKL (524) had the high handicap game, while Tres Amigos (1,896) had the high handicap series.

In scratch scoring, three men had a 500-plus series. Randall led the way with a 580 score that included games of 195 and 203. Jerry Dunham had a 203 as part of his 552 series, and Warren Corriveau Sr. had a 193 as part of his 531 series. Gary Montgomery had high games of 191 and 212.

Sonya Shippee rolled a 186 as part of her 476 series that led the women. Debbie Kolpa rolled a 185.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #517 (Wednesday, July 3, 2019). This story appeared on page E4.

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