2011-06-03 / Sports

Rockaway Little League To Hold Saturday All-Star Celebration

Julia Carey was sharp in her first start of the year for the Major Girls Angels. Julia Carey was sharp in her first start of the year for the Major Girls Angels. Coming out of the Memorial Day break, the first place teams in Rockaway Little League’s six competitive divisions have solid holds on the top spots, led by the 10-0 Harbor Light Dodgers of the Minor Boys division.

Chasing the Dodgers are the second place F.C. Gerlach Blue Jays (7-2) who faced off against the third place Orlow Firm Marlins (5-3) before the break. The Jays trailed 5-4 entering the top of the sixth, but broke it open by scoring four runs. Donato DiGiacomo (3 hits) led off with a single, Griffin Skammel followed with an RBI double and Joe Braskey walked. Both of them were driven home on Timmy Connolly’s double. The final score was 8-5 Jays.

John Conroy was on base three times for the Jays and Danny Morales scored a run. Jack Casey was the hitting star for the Marlins with three hits and three RBIs.

The Major Girls’ F.C. Gerlach Braves have been almost as dominant as the Minor Boys’ Dodgers this season, steaming out to a 7-0 start. They faced their stiffest test of the season against the second place T. Moriarty and Son Angels. The Braves squeaked out an 11-10 victory in a game where neither team deserved to lose. The game featured five lead changes and the score was tied 9-9 going into the bottom of the fifth inning.

Although the contest was hotly contested, the Angels and Braves demonstrated sportsmanship, along with good pitching, excellent defense and timely hitting over the course of this six-inning thriller. Sportsmanship was on display as there were several bang-bang plays that resulted in hard, clean slides and collisions with the opposing fielder at both third base and home plate. The girls shook hands and assisted each other up with mutual admiration.

Julia Carey hurled a complete game for the Angels, striking out three. The Braves countered using four pitchers; Meagan McGinn went a season high three innings, which was followed by one inning stints by Lauren Durante, Jenny Fahy and Renee Simos who picked up the save.

Defensive gems were on display as Brave catcher Melissa Piccione threw out two would-be base stealers at second base, one each in the first and fourth innings. Angels shortstop Emma Knox and Braves shortstop Renee Simos flashed some leather. Emma Knox ranged up the middle to field a grounder and Renee Simos speared a line drive going to her left to make the play. At the plate, hitters lavished hits in the warm weather. Angel Marina Creagan ripped two triples and drove in three runs. Cassie Moriarty had a solid game with two singles, an RBI and two runs scored.

For the Braves, Annie Velluzzi had a clutch two-run single in the first inning. Samantha Rom had the biggest hit of the night, a game winning single to give the Braves the lead for good in the bottom of the fifth inning. Both the Angels and Braves should be proud to have played in a classic game and each player deserved to hold her head high as they walked off the field.

Like the Braves, the Minor Girls Sportography Reds (6-0-1) are undefeated front runners. The Lichtenstein Lions A’s have had less success in the standings, but gave the Reds their toughest game of the year on May 21. In a field of nine players, each of the A’s yielded five RBIs and Liz Meringolo swung true for a three-run homer. Kathleen Walker at first, Maggie Brady at short, and Meringolo at third made some terrific plays against the Reds’ sluggers. The game ended at a tie of 20- 20 after a four-inning, two-hour game. With the continued efforts and positive attitudes of all the players and their parents the A’s are on their way to a true victory!

In the Junior Boys division, the first place J&E Industries Orioles avoided their first defeat, escaping with a onerun victory over the Empire Surgical Angels. The Orioles got strong pitching from Kevin McDonagh in a see-saw battle. They prevailed in walk off fashion.

The Orioles also have a firm grip on first place in the Major Boys division. The Monavie sponsored club has suffered just one loss and one tie. However, the Coastal Real Estate Rockies are hovering in second place, hoping to make a late run.

Finally, the Pee Wee Senior division has the most interesting pennant race. The DJs at Work Reds were in the top spot with an undefeated 6-0 record but the American Legion Braves (8-2) had played four more games and sat in a virtual tie, no games behind. Meanwhile the Sconzo & Sconzo Jays were within striking distance at 6-2. The final two weeks should be exciting.

Rockaway Little League is proud to announce that Aiden Gallagher of the Major Boys Marlins has advanced to the MLB Team Championship round of the national Pitch, Hit and Run competition. The next round will be at Yankee Stadium on June 12. If Aiden advances from there, he will compete in the national championship at the Major League All-Star Game in Arizona. Good luck, Aiden.

Back at home, our All Star Gala is tomorrow (June 4), beginning at 11:00. This event is open to the entire Little League family and Rockaway community. Admission is free. Test your arm in the Dunk Tank Challenge. Dunk your “favorite” local celebrity. All proceeds go to charity. Test your or your child’s long ball power in the Home Run Derby. The winners get cool prizes. There will be a softball game between the Marines and the Army. Cheer on our active duty service members. And, of course, cheer on our deserving Little League All Stars in their six divisional games.

DIAMOND DUST – RLL Night at the Cyclones is June 25. Contact Rich Mills (917-670-7181) for ticket info... For updates and standings go to www.rockawaylittleleagueny.com.

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