OLD ORCHARD BEACH–Host Fayette-Staples Post couldn’t hold a late-game lead for the second consecutive game Friday afternoon, and it cost them.

Mike Hayden lined a sacrifice fly into center field in the bottom of the 10th as Cranston, R.I., rallying from an early five-run deficit, pulled out a 7-6 win and knock the Maine team out of American Legion baseball’s northeast regional at The Ballpark.

Thursday night, Colchester, Vt., rallied for two runs in the bottom of the 11th to pull out a 7-6 win against Fayette-Staples.

“We couldn’t close the deal again,” Fayette-Staples coach Ray Petit said. “Last night, we were one strike away twice from ending it, and today we had two outs.”

Matt Pagano started the game-winning rally with a leadoff single. After he stole second and went to third on catcher Josh Coffin’s throwing error. Hayden lined out to center field to bring in the winning run.

The Rhode Island state champions will play Whitestown Post, the New York champion, at 9:30 a.m. today in an elimination-round game.


Fayette-Staples Post, made up primarily of players from Thornton Academy in Saco, went 0-2 in the eight-team, double-elimination tournament.

“It’s definitely disappointing,” Petit said. “I feel bad for these kids. They work hard and they played well. It’s not a very good way to lose a game, but, you know, it might make them tougher.”

Fayette-Staples Post scored three runs in each of the first two innings to open up an early 6-1 lead.

The host club started the game by loading the bases on Sam Canales’ single, an infield error and a hit batsman. Jeff Gelinas drove in two runs by singling sharply to left, and the third run scored when Matt Pagano let the ball get past him.

John Razzino led off the bottom of the first with a walk, went to second on a groundball and scored on catcher Coffin’s throwing error while stealing third.

In the second, Fayette-Staples again loaded the bases on an error, a hit batsman and Trevor Fleurent’s single. One run scored when Alex Richardson-Newton bounced into a double play. Turnage followed with a run-producing double and Gelinas drove in his third run of the game with his second single.


Whitetown, N.Y. 6, Gayton Post 1: Only two Gayton Post hitters managed to hit balls safely out of the infield as Whitestown, N.Y. rolled to a win Friday morning to knock the Maine champions out of American Legion baseball’s northeast regional tournament at The Ballpark.

Gayton Post, which managed to scored a total of three runs, went 0-2 in the eight-team, double-elimination tournament.

“If you were to assess our team, you would say we’re an offensively-based team,” Gayton Post coach Todd Cifelli said. “Unfortunately, sometimes you don’t hit, and we didn’t hit the last two days.”

Gayton Post, made up primarily of players from Lewiston High School, stranded a total of 23 baserunners in its two games in the regional tournament.

“I think we pressed,” Cifelli said. “We left guys on, and we continued to press. You can’t try harder in baseball. You’ve just got to trust yourself, your approach you’ve done the whole time, and I think we pressed the last two days.”

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