By Peter McCarthy and Chris LaMonica
METS 7 CARDINALS 6
The Knights’ 7-8-year-old teams began the playoffs this past Sunday as the Cardinals took on the Mets to see which team would advance to play the Dodgers in the semifinal round.
Giacomo Pollina took the mound for the Mets. Vincent Mazzara led off for the Cardinals and reached safely on an error. Paul Fasciano batted next and was hit by a pitch. Then William Tiederman hit a nice shot, but the runner was tagged out at third base. Justin Rosado came up and hit a double, driving in Fasciano to give Cardinals a 1-0 lead.
The Mets came right back in the bottom of the first when Vito Demonte singled to lead off the inning. Niko Geroulanos hit into a fielder’s choice and Marc Benvenuto was hit by a pitch. Matt Degrazia singled in Geroulanos to tie the game at 1-1.
In the top of the second, Pollina struck out the side for the Mets. In the bottom of the inning, the Mets scored two runs when Sal Martucci and Ryan Spelman walked, and Niko Geroulanos hit a double to drive in two runs.
The Mets took a 3-1 lead into the third, when Fasciano singled for the Cardinals, but watched the next three batters get struck out by Pollina. In the bottom of the third, the Mets scored three more runs when Benvenuto singled, Matt Degrezia walked, Chris Nanas doubled in two runs and William Paloumbis singled in another run.
The Cardinals did not give up and, in the top of the fourth inning, they scored five runs to tie the game. Gino Sarta, Chris Gargano and Vincent Oliviero all walked, then Julian Hasson was hit by a pitch to score a run. Joseph Farina and Vincent Mazzara both walked to score a run apiece, and then Fasciano singled in another two runs to make it a 6-6 game.
The game stayed knotted at 6-6 as Justin Rosado came in to pitch for the Cardinals and held the Mets to one hit in two innings, notching three strikeouts. The Mets brought in their closer, Nanas, who struck out two batters in the fifth and three more in the sixth.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Mets scored the winning run when Geroulanos singled and Angel Rodriguez, Benvenuto and Pollina all walked to score the run.
Cardinals 8 Giants 4
The last-place Cardinals eliminated the first-place Giants by a final of 8-4 in a shocker this past Sunday.
The Cardinals came out on fire, scoring three runs in the top of the first inning. Joseph Baglivo started it off when he singled and stole second. Then Nick Angilletta singled in the run and stole second and third. Michael LaMonica reached on an error and Angilletta scored on the play. Angelo Fogliano hit a ground ball to third that scored the third run.
The Giants came right back in the bottom of the inning when John Pluchino walked, John Longardo reached on an error, Joe Comodo singled in a run, Sal Sorrentino reached on an error to score another run and George Karagkounis and Joseph Hasson each walked to score another run.
The Cardinals scored three more runs in the top of the second inning when John Parker singled and stole second and third, Gianna DeGregorio walked and stole second, Michael Mollica singled in Parker, Gianluca Caravello walked, Daniel Vittiburga walked in a run and Baglivo walked in another run.
The Giants were held in check in the third and fourth innings by the superb pitching of Baglivo and LaMonica. The Cardinals scored one run in the top of the third when LaMonica doubled and then Parker laid down a beautiful bunt to catch the Giants off-guard and score the runner.
In the top of the fourth, the Cardinals scored their eighth run when Michael Mollica walked and stole second and Caravello singled, Gabriella Gargano was hit by a pitch and Vittiburga hit a ball that scored the runner from third base.
The Giants started the sixth inning off with a triple by Pluchino right down the third base line, but were only able to bring in one run before recording the third and final out of the game.