BARRINGTON — His teammates spotted him a couple runs in their first at-bat and Kam Gianlorenzo made it stand up the rest of the way as the Riverside Post 10 American Legion Baseball team claimed its second consecutive Rhode Island Department Junior Division state title with a 2-0 victory over Warwick PAL Post 101 Tuesday night, Aug. 5, at Barrington High’s Victory Field.
The locals, the top seed in the playoffs, won the third and deciding game of the championship series after splitting the first two contests played over the previous two nights in Barrington and in Warwick.
Riverside advances to the Northeast Regional Tournament at Gill Stadium in Manchester, N.H., Saturday, Aug. 9 through Monday, Aug. 11. Post 10 plays the Maine champ in its opener Saturday afternoon at 4:30. Despite losing, Post 101 also qualified for the regional event.
Gianlorenzo, like the nucleus of the Post 10 rosters about to enter his senior season at East Providence High School in the fall, was superb on the mound for the locals Tuesday. He went the seven inning distance, scattered three hits, walked just one, struck out nine, all on just 70 pitches.
Warwick threatened a couple of times, including in the top of the seventh. Post 101 got a lead-off double before Gianlorenzo struck out the next hitter and enticed a groundout to shortstop Adam Duarte.
Gianlorenzo appeared to end the contest with another strikeout but the ball got away from the Riverside catcher and the throw down to first wasn’t handled either. The runner at first eventually moved to second, putting the tying run in scoring position before Gianlorenzo recorded his ninth and final strikeout for the championship-clinching win.
As for Riverside’s two runs, Mike Allienello and Kyle Marquis each drew two out walks in the home half of the first inning. Duarte singled to plate Allienello. He then got caught in a rundown between first and second, allowing Marquis to come across with the second Post 10 tally.
“Kam was great tonight. We scored twice in the bottom of the first and he did the rest,” said Post 10 manager Keith Marquis Sr. “Warwick is a very good team all-around. They’re definitely the best team we’ve faced all season, but out kids came through. They were clutch when we needed it. We were one out away from elimination last night, and we scored four times to stay alive. They were clutch.”
Post 10, loser of Game 1 of the series, was down to its final out and trailing by a 3-1 score in Game 2 Tuesday night before rallying for four runs to level the series at one-all. Jordan Gibson’s two-run double plated the tying and go-ahead runs to help the locals stay alive for Tuesday’s finale.