AMERICAN LEGION BASEBALL: Rain halts Meriden Post 45’s playoff game against Greenwich

MERIDEN – What was shaping up to be an epic conclusion to a tightly contested game between Meriden Post 45 and the Greenwich Cannons will have to wait after rain delayed the game going into extra innings with the score tied, 6-6 at Legion Field.

The Connecticut American Legion Baseball Regional Qualifying Tournament contest will be concluded on Wednesday at 5:45 p.m. in the eighth inning at Legion Field.

After edging out Fairfield 1-0 the day prior, Meriden’s bats came alive early.

Giacco drew a walk to start the first off before successfully taking off for a steal. A double deep to left field by Evan Avery was the shot to drive in the run.

Avery soon found himself on third base after advancing on a passed ball and then a double steal with Andrew McCarty, who walked.

That’s when Ethan Brazel, the batter who provided the lone run in Monday’s contest, stepped up to bat. Brazel continued his tournament heroics with a single to left field that plated Avery and McCarty to take a 3-0 lead.

Meriden pitcher Wes Deno cruised through the first two innings before facing some controversy in the third.

After three straight singles to start off the inning, Greenwich’s Ben Nash took a pitch deep to center field which escaped the grasp of Avery’s glove.

Jacob Mondschein crossed the plate to put a run on the board but when Riley Redahan accidentally passed George Bancroft, he was ruled out.

Greenwich continued to add to the score when Christian Mingione singled to right field to plate Bancroft. Nash and Mingione later scored after Justin Zola reached on a fielding error.

Javon Malone redeemed his error with an RBI single of his own, bringing Peyton Thiel across after the second baseman singled to left, in the bottom of the fourth to tie the game, 4-4.

Greenwich then took a 6-4 lead in the top of the sixth when George Bancroft roped a single to center to bring Zola and Mondschein home, both reaching on singles prior to Bancroft’s at-bat.

The lead wouldn’t last long, however. After walking Ted Haniewski, Riley Redahan was replaced on the mound with Christian Mingione.

Meriden was able to get to Mingione quickly as Max Giacco lined a double down the left field line and Javon Malone drew a walk. Andrew McCarty then delivered a clutch at bat with bases loaded, poking one through to right field to plate Haniewski and Giacco to tie the game.

Lightning was soon spotted interrupting the game right before going into extra innings.

Deno left the shortened game with 12 hits, four strikeouts, and one walk.

Riley Redahan, the opposing pitcher, lasted five innings after walking five, striking out two and allowing eight hits.

“We had our chances. Wes threw a good ball game but we knew it might be tough for him because they changed their approach to him after the second inning,” said Coach Doug Wedge.

“Our rotation was set up good but now we’re going to have to get creative.”

The game was then postponed to the same time on Wednesday and any games that were expected to be played will be pushed back a day.

“We came into this game knowing that Greenwich could hit so we ended up having to change our pitching patterns to adjust. We’ll pick it up in the seventh tomorrow but we need to play hard and shut them down and take it from there,” Meriden coach Doug Wedge said.

Also on Tuesday, Wallingford defeated Madison 6-0 to stay alive. Wallingford will play an opponent to be determined on Thursday.

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