Cranston Mayor Allan Fung welcomed the Cranston Western Little League 10-year-old All-Stars to city hall last week to congratulate them on their historic summer season and to honor the league as a whole for its success over the past decade.
The CWLL 10’s cruised to a state championship win in July and would then take home the regional crown to punch their ticket to the Eastern Regional tournament. All three CWLL All-Star teams won their districts this summer as well, as CWLL continued to cement its place as one of the premier Little Leagues in New England.
“I am so appreciative of Mayor Fung and the city of Cranston. Mayor Fung has been so supportive of me and the kids and he made this happen. I, personally, along with the league could not be more appreciative,” said CWLL 10’s manager James Sweeney, who felt that his team’s mental fortitude is what set it apart this summer. “It was mental toughness beyond anything else. It’s a talented group and a smart team. They had one goal in mind on June 15th and that was to win a state championship. After that, I left it to them and asked if they wanted to be a part of it or win it, and they said, ‘we’re going to win New England’s.’ It was the mental toughness, that hard work and determination.”
Sweeney also felt that his club’s team chemistry also instilled a team-first attitude.
“It’s the things off the field, people don’t understand. It’s the pool parties, the dinner parties, people don’t really understand it until they’re a part of it, but these kids become family both on the field and off the field,” said Sweeney. “We practice all the time, but when they go and hang out with each other after practice, that makes us a better team. It’s a family atmosphere and it starts from the top here with the league.”
Mayor Fung presented the league with a key to the city, which was accepted by representatives of the league, including 12’s coach Gary Bucci, who helped guide CWLL to the Little League World Series in Williamsport back in 2015. The key to the city was presented to honor not only the league’s success on the field, but as well as its impact off the field and in the community.
“That’s the culture of Cranston Western. Of course, we’re blessed to have a lot of great talent in the area, but it starts from the tee ball level all the way to the majors, the commitment of this league is extraordinary,” said Sweeney. “They play in the winter, they play in the fall, for them, this isn’t just an activity, it’s a big part of their life. I hope as a representative of this league that we keep preaching that dedication and work ethic.”
The CWLL 10’s are: Matt Gomez, Ezra Small, David Cavalloro, Shane Gaudreau, Jeremy Silverio, Nico Testa, Chase D’Ambra, Dylan Gugliette, DJ Malloy, Josh Albizu, Max Muschiano, Nate Izzi and Nathan DiZoglio.