The Cranston Western 12-year-old All-Star team cruised to a 19-0 win over visiting Mount Pleasant in the opening round of the District 1 tournament last weekend.
Western jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning and never looked back, dominating from start to finish in a complete performance.
“It is what it is. Sometimes when you get up big you make some mistakes mentally and physically, but overall, we took care of business. We got a lot of kids in, a lot of at bats, a lot of kids got some confidence in tournament play, so now we’ll go from here,” said Western coach Gary Bucci, who felt that the big first inning helped take the pressure off of his club. “Regardless of who you are or who you’re playing, the first game and the pressure at this level is immense. It was good (to go up early), it is good to get that lead and ease the pressure regardless of who you’re playing.”
Ethan Madden led the way at the plate with three RBI, while Marcus Almada, Jack Fontaine and Jared Patalano all recorded two each.
Giacomo Caliri got the start for Western, going two innings and allowing no runs on just two hits and recording five strikeouts. Michael Parks pitched the final two innings, allowing no runs, no hits and striking out three.
“We have two kids that can throw, Jack Caliri and Jack Schmiedeknect both throw very hard, we’ll be OK there but the question is who will we have behind them. Obviously with pitch counts you need to be able to go to the next guy, then the next guy. We’re a solid team, but I’d say our strength will be defense, we have very few holes defensively,” said Bucci of his club’s strength heading into the tournament.
Western went on to face Fox Point on Wednesday evening, but the results were not available at press time.
Bucci hopes to see his team continue to roll, and to take things one half inning at a time.
“We’ll turn the heat up at practice, we will make it intense,” said Bucci. “The next half inning is the most important, that is how we’re coaching and that is how we need to play.”