---- — MIDDLETOWN — The Clinton County Junior Mariners dominated both games and went on to win by a combined score of 20-1 over the Middletown Cobras and the Ridgefield, Conn. Warriors on Saturday in the Middletown Cobras American Legion baseball Tournament.
The Mariners recorded a 10-0 victory over Middletown and a 10-1 decision over Ridgefield.
The Mariners (5-0) didn’t even get to finish the first game against the Cobras in its entirety because a run rule was put into action when they went up 10-0 early in the sixth inning.
“I was surprised when the game was called,” Clinton County coach Gary Duquette said. “I wasn’t aware that the tournament had a mercy rule.”
Blake Altizer was a big reason the Mariners were handed the game on the run rule.
Altizer went 3-for-3, which included a single, a double and a triple that brought in two runs in the team’s big five-run third inning.
“Altizer has a very hot bat right now,” Duquette said. “He is a force at the plate and has a huge impact on the team.”
The Mariners also had a stellar performance from Andy Kneussle on the mound as he fanned nine batters and walked one to get the win.
“Kneussle pitched a heck of a game and had a lot of confidence on the mound,” Duquette said. “He really commanded the strike zone, and his fast ball had good movement.”
Nate Stanton rapped two hits, Quenton Barber recorded a double and Shawn Courson added a triple.
The Mariners were on their way to grabbing another run-rule win in their second game, but Ridgefield was able to muster a run in the fourth inning that kept the second game alive.
Brandon Buksa took the mound for the Mariners and sent 11 batters back to their seats on strikes while walking just one. Tristan Archambault pitched the final inning and struck out one to end the game.
“Buksa was dominating on the mound today, and he has been a big reason for our success this season.” Duquette said.
The bats were swinging just as well in the second game for the Mariners as they were in the first.
Altizer hit his second triple of the day and finished the two games batting 5-for-5 with six RBI.
Courson went 2-for-3, including a double, while adding three RBI in the win. Quenton Barber also went 2-for-2.
“Really, everybody just hit the ball well today,” Duquette said.
Junior Mariners 10, Middletown 0
Junior Mariners 015 004 — 1090
Middletown 000 000 — 022
Kneussle and Hartman. Grogan and Mirra. WP- Kneussle. LP- Grogan.
2B- Barber (M), Altizer (M). 3B- Courson (M), Altizer (M).
Junior Mariners 10, Ridgefield 1
Junior Mariners 332 200 0 — 10142
Ridgefield 000 100 0— 113
Buksa, Archambault (6) and Altizer, Marion (5). Angelo, Webb (3) and Fornshell.
WP- Buksa. LP- Angelo. 2B- Courson (M) Barber (M), Stanton (M). 3B- Altizer(M).
CANNONS 7, POST 326 3WHITEHALL 1, POST 326 0
LAKE PLACID — The Post #326 Adirondacks junior American Legion baseball team opened its season by getting some solid pitching on Saturday.
But the bats were quiet in a 7-3 loss to the Colchester Junior Cannons and a 1-0 setback to Whitehall.
Against the Cannons, the Adirondacks rallied to tie the game with three runs in the bottom of the sixth, only to have the Cannons break the tie with four runs in the seventh.
Ryan Trudeau gave Post 326 a quality start, allowing three runs in pitching the first five innings. Ryan Damp took the loss in relief.
Singles by Alex Brandes, Damp and Dillon Savage accounted for the only hits for the Adirondacks.
Against Whitehall, the tough-luck loss went to Chris Clarke, who tossed a three-hitter with 10 strikeouts and three walks. The only run of the game came on a steal of home in the sixth inning.
“Clarke was just on his game today — he was outstanding,” Adirondacks’ coach Rik Cassidy said.
However, singles by Savage and Drew Sturgeon were the only hits for Post 326, which finished with just five hits on the day.
“Our pitching was great today,” Cassidy said. “And our defense was good. I was happy with the way we played.
“We didn’t hit the ball well, but that’s going to eventually come around.”
The Adirondacks are scheduled to play the same two teams today.
Cannons 7, Adirondacks 3
Cannons 102 000 4 — 781
Adirondacks 000 003 0 — 331
Bushy, Bailey (6) and Laroche. Trudeau, Damp (6) and Savage. WP- Bailey. LP- Damp.
Whitehall 1, Adirondacks 0
Whitehall 000 001 0 — 131
Adirondacks 000 000 0 — 021
Polzobut and Barber. Clarke and Savage. WP- Polzobut. LP- Clarke.