By Ken Morse, Citizen’s News
Naugatuck Babe Ruth ended the season with a bang.
Sibby’s Automotive defended its title, battling past Naugatuck Firefighters in a best-of-three series that came down to the final game.
Championships are meant to be memorable, and the two teams didn’t disappoint.
The teams split pitching duels in the first two games. Sibby’s pulled out a 1-0 win in the series opener Aug. 20, and the Firefighters escaped with a 2-0 victory in game two.
It came down to game three Aug. 22 to decide the title. Sibby’s unleashed a 15-hit attack in an 11-1 win to claim the championship.
“They gave us a run for our money,” Sibby’s head coach Will Gairing said. “During the season we split with them and both games were by the score of 5-2. Pitching dominated the first two games and we really got our hitting going in game three.”
Sibby’s exploded for three runs in the first and second innings of game three to grab a quick 6-0 advantage. The team had another three-run inning in the sixth en route to the victory.
Alex Torrens went 4-for-4 with three doubles and five RBI. Nate Parker had two doubles and scored two runs. Ryan Tyszka struck out eight on the hill.
“We had a good core of players coming back from last year,” Gairing said. “The kids stuck together and got it done. Once we scored those first couple of runs in the last game, it really took a lot of pressure off.”
Game one was a battle from the first pitch. The game remained scoreless heading into the bottom of the seventh, before Joe Stasik singled, stole two bases and scored the game-winning run for Sibby’s.
Bothers Ryan and Andrew Tyszka combined to pitch seven shutout innings and struck out 10. Matt Stefan, Parker, Torrens and Stasik had hits.
Josh Rivera pitched a strong game for the Firefighters with 6 and 1/3 shutout innings. Tyler Santiago and Brendan Lynch had two hits each for the Firefighters.
Dakota Palange threw a 67-pitch masterpiece for the Firefighters in game two. He got all the run support he needed when Cayden O’Neil and Nate Gendron scored runs in the third inning.
Andrew Tyszka threw six strong innings for Sibby’s, scattering just two hits.
“We had a good run,” Firefighters head coach Derek Palange said. “We were in all of our games this season. The first two games had outstanding pitching. We just ran out of pitching. It was a great series.”