EAST PROVIDENCE — The Riverside/East Providence Central Major Baseball Division All-Stars won the District 2 Little League title in dramatic fashion Tuesday night, July 20, over Barrington by a …
EAST PROVIDENCE — The Riverside/East Providence Central Major Baseball Division All-Stars won the District 2 Little League title in dramatic fashion Tuesday night, July 20, over Barrington by a 9-5 score on Aiden Martins’ walk-off grand slam in extra innings.
"It was a fastball, right in the side corner...It just happened so fast. It was awesome," Martins said of his homer, which sent the local fans and his teammates, who tackled him at home plate, into a frenzy. "It was like the best experience ever, to see everyone there. It was crazy. I was on the ground. I was laying there. I got pig-piled."
Barrington, which lost to Rumford earlier in the event, won the initial championship round outing, 2-0, played Sunday night, July 18, at the Forbes Street Complex in city to force a deciding contest. Riverside had not been defeated until Sunday in the double-elimination tourney.
In the title game that actually started Monday night, July 19, also at Forbes because of poor field conditions in Barrington, the teams were tied at 4-all after six regular innings complete.
Barrington took a 5-4 lead in the top of the eighth before the game was halted due to darkness by the homeplate umpire in a rather awkward spot; Barrington with the bases loaded, two outs and a 2-2 count on the batter.
They returned to Forbes the next night to finish it off. Riverside averted any more damage then did some of its own in the bottom of the inning, plating the tying run and loading the bases, before culminating with Martins ripping a pitch well over the centerfield fence for the winning slam.
"I was trying to get a decent hit. I was just trying to score the run," Martins said of his at-bat. "I was just trying to put it in play to make them think or something."
Asked of the advice he received from the coaching staff prior to his at bat, Martins added, "Just be a leader."
Riverside, which last won the District 2 title in 2017, advances to the state tournament at Garvin Field in Cumberland. The locals are scheduled to open the event Saturday morning, July 24, at 11 against District 1 winner North Providence. District 3 winner South Kingstown plays District 4 winner Cumberland American in the other game. The winners then are set to play Monday night, July 26, at 7:45 p.m. The losers meet earlier that night at 5:45 p.m.
The Riverside/E.P. Central Major All-Star roster includes: Owen Richards, Alex Enright, Aiden Martins, JJ Renaud, Parker Andrews, Chris Charbonneau, Wyatt Andrews, Jose Figueroa, Jake Sousa, Tristan Lawton, Tristan Tysvaer, Josh Shanty and Jaydon Alford. Vin Enright is the manager. Chris Martins, Mike Sabourin and Jody Richards are the coaches.