Rockaway Little League
By Shelley Plock
JKS defeated defending champs One stop Photo two games to none to win the girls minor softball championship.
Game one was low scoring with JKS coming out on top by a score of 4-2. JKS' defense was solid all season long and this game was no different, Jordanna Cotilletta had three assists and a putout at second base, and Ellen Cashin made a fine inning ending play at third base to stop any runs from scoring. Jenna Boggiano was in top form pitching as well as fielding, not to mention a huge three run triple that scored Mary Gillen and Marie Alana Flynn and put JKS on top for good in the third inning. With JKS holding on to a 4-1 lead, One Stop battled back only to be stopped from scoring time and time again, with clutch plays in the infield by Alana Fiorentino at first base and Amanda Boggiano at shortstop.
In game two Mellisa Tammaro pitched her best game of the season, striking out four and made two putouts to hold One Stop to just one run. In the second inning two runs came across the plate as Cristina Iudica and Caroline Plunkett singled and drove home Jordanna Cotilleta and Elen Cashin. Laura Lombardi scored a run in the third inning to give JKS the lead at 3-1.The fifth inning JKS blew the game open with seven runs coming home. Katie Pasita started the rally with a two run home run, followed by three hits in a row by Alana Fiorentino, Jenna Boggiano and Ellen Cashin. After Mellissa Tammaro singled Jordanna Cotilleta moved her over on a fielders choice, Caroline Plunkett sent her home and then scored all the way from first looking like Mickey Mantle on the basepath blowing by third base coach Boggianno's sign and sliding home. JKS then went out and held One Stop scoreless the rest of the way coming away with a 10-1 victory to win the championship.
It was a great season for JKS. Several players showed much improvement and look forward to next season and defending the championship. Coach Jim Cashin would like to thank all the parents for making the effort getting the girls to practice and attending and cheering the team on all season long. Special thanks to Tom Boggianno filling in as coach, Al Fiorentino, Frank Iudica helping out in the dugout, and in the coaches boxes, Chuck Gillen and Mike Lombardi also helped out and umpired for the team.
Minor Division Champions…
The crowning of the little league's Minor Division champions took place on July 1 and 2 with Quigley's Insurance taking two hard fought games from the very talented Knights of Columbus. The Minor League Division is one where new players experience significant transition from the playing level below (Pee Wee). Gone is the ability of the batter to stand up there and wait for that perfect pitch while the coach's arm lengthens by two inches. Gone is the ability to just throw the ball to the pitcher’s mound for all play to stop.
The Minor Division gives the players their first look at what
it's like to play the game with little parental control. Think about what it
must feel like up at bat for the first time not really sure if the pitcher’s
pitch is going to be one that you can swing at or duck from (sort of like
what Mike Piazza will think the next time he faces Clemens).
Quigley's Insurance had many players that were in this transition from Pee Wee to the Minors. Luckily, we were met by some talented veterans of the likes of Matt Ryan and Danny Edwards that provided leadership for the players and knowledge for the rookie coaches. The season had many defensive standouts that proved significantly important because as we all know defense
wins baseball games. Starting with our pitching staff no one developed
faster and more effectively than Vinny Boland who came into several games in crunch time and shut down the opposition. Other pitching standouts included Matt (next year I'm growing my hair long so I can be called the Big Unit) Patterson, Matt Ryan, Danny Munday, TJ Laible, Gregg Pulkoski, Danny Edwards, Danny Paskoff and Tommy Boggiano.
Our catcher’s position was manned
by Pulkoski, Edwards and Boggiano who by the end of the season were gunning opposing runners down.
The infield on any given day was anchored by any of the following: Sean
Boyle, Mike Scannell, Joey McCabe, Sean Cordes, Patterson, Paskoff, Ryan, Boland, Munday, Edwards. The outfield positions in the minor division requires a significant amount of salesmanship by the coach to convince the players that it is an important part of the defense and not just a good vantage point to watch the games on the other fields. Quigley's was fortunate to have players that enjoyed playing the outfield especially TJ (do I have to go to right field again) Laible and Sean (you can count on me) Boyle and Tommy (why do you keep moving me on every batter) Boggiano.
Other outfield standouts were George Urcelay and Joe Einsman. Offensively, Quigley's experienced a big change from the beginning of the
year where sometimes it looked like a parade of batters walking up to the
plate taking three strikes and walking back to the dugout each of them looking at the third base coach like "you mean you wanted me to swing the bat" to an attacking offense where the coaches were comfortable with any player on the team up at bat in a key situation. This transition and education for the players did not come without much hard work on their part as well as the parents involved. Many weeks there were two or three practices plus a game, which
meant that the local pizzerias and Chinese restaurants were very happy.
Hopefully, the players have learned that although it's fun figuring out
whether we want trophies or jackets, it's more important to be part of a
team to share the highlights of the season as well as to pick each other up when things aren't as rosy. Many thanks to Marty Andresen and Rick Ehresman and the many volunteers for putting the time and the money into refurbishing the Minor Division field making it one of the nicest playing fields in the city (with real Yankee Stadium clay, which is, of course, a little nicer than Shea Stadium clay).