2010 BRENDAN GRANT MEMORIAL BASEBALL TOURNAMENT
PROVIDES GREAT BASEBALL AND A DRAMATIC FINISH
Sixth Annual Tournament Held
Friday through Sunday, 28 - 30 May 2010 in Belmont, Massachusetts
The sixth annual Brendan Grant Memorial Baseball Tournament once again drew
solid crowds at the Brendan Grant Memorial Field in Belmont, Massachusetts.
The games were scheduled for Friday and Saturday, 28 & 29 May 2010, and were
extended to Sunday 30 May 2010 after a rain delay caused suspension of the
Belmont fans who returned to watch their team on Sunday witnessed a
spectacular come-from-behind thriller that will surely be talked about for a
very long time. This year's event added another chapter to its string of
successful tournaments with another strong showing of top quality high
On Friday, May 28nd the 4-game tourney opened at 2:15 pm with
Winchester at Belmont in a contest that counted for both Belmont and
Winchester as a Middlesex League game. Belmont posted three quick runs in
the first inning and added two more in the second, but Winchester clawed
their way back to tie the game 5 to 5 late in the game.
Belmont snatched the
victory in the bottom of the seventh after John Dillon hit a walk-away
double that scored the winning run, thrilling the large home crowd that was
on hand. It was a hard-fought battle with strong pitching from Jed Robinson
for Winchester and Evan Nichols and Matt Brown throwing for Belmont.
The second game on Friday started in late afternoon and also showed plenty
of talent, skill, and power. Lynnfield was up first with Austin Prep as the
home team, and it was a close game through the first couple of innings. Then
Lynnfield broke it open in the third, going on to win by a score of 13 to 3.
Sophomore Ryan MacEachern started on the mound for Austin Prep, and
Lynnfield had Senior Mike Pescione as their starting pitcher.
Saturday began with the consolation game at 11:00 am that had Austin Prep
facing-off against Winchester. Austin Prep scored first with a run in the
first and another in the third, but Winchester took the lead for good with
four quick runs in the bottom of the third when Jed Robinson went deep over
the 340 foot sign in straight-away center with a grand slam. Winchester
tallied one more in the fourth inning and then broke it open with a 7-run
fifth inning. Austin Prep scored two more in the sixth, but was unable to
come back, and the final score was 12 to 4 with Winchester on top. Alex
Quzor pitched for Winchester and got the win, while Austin Prep started with
Joseph Barry on the mound followed by Jonathon Richard and Jesse Vardaro.
The championship game got underway late because of the extended play of the
first game, and this late start would contribute to an unusual combination
of factors that would result in a truly unforgettable baseball game spread
over two days. Despite playing on the Belmont home field, Lynnfield won the
coin toss and had home team status. Belmont’s Collin McNamara started on the
mound and Dante Padovani was the hurler for Lynnfield. After Belmont had 3
quick outs with 3 batters in the top of the first, Lynnfield stunned the
home town crowd by posting 9 runs through a sprinkle of hits and errors
before Belmont worked their way out of a long first inning.
The hot bats settled down over the next several innings with each team
scoring one run each, and at the start of the fifth inning Lynnfield was on
top with a seemingly insurmountable score of 10 to 1 over the Belmont
Marauders. At this point, however, events began to align themselves in favor
of Belmont. The top of the fifth inning began with the first three Belmont
batters getting on base with no outs.
But just as quick as this Belmont
rally had started, and before reaching 5 and ½ full innings to make an
official game, a flash of lightning suddenly appeared in the distance beyond
center field and the game was immediately suspended and the field cleared. A
heavy downpour followed that soaked the field, and after about 45 minutes
the game was officially suspended to resume the following day (Sunday).
For the first time in the history of the tournament a rain delay caused it
to extend by a day, and the two teams got underway at 1:00 pm sharp on
Sunday 30 May. John Dillon was now on the mound for Belmont, and Lynnfield
had Joe Satorelli as their pitcher. The game restarted with the bases loaded
for Belmont in the top of the fifth with no outs and the score at 10 to 1 in
favor of Lynnfield. Lynnfield needed nine more outs to close out the game,
and most of the returning fans seemed to have already resigned themselves to
an easy Lynnfield victory. This, however, was not meant to be.
The first Belmont batter at the plate was Michael Vona, and after
fouling-off multiple strikes he was finally walked and with the bases loaded
forced in a run. Before Lynnfield could close out the fifth inning Belmont
scored five more runs, capped off with a bases-loaded-clearing-double by
It was a new contest with the score now 10 to 7 in favor of
Lynnfield. Strong pitching by Belmont’s John Dillon and near perfect defense
helped keep Lynnfield scoreless through the rest of the game. In the
meantime, Belmont threatened in the top of the sixth but failed to score a
runner from third.
In the top of the seventh inning Belmont trailed by 3 runs and had only 3
outs remaining, with Lynnfield’s Dante Padovani now on the hill. Between
outs Belmont’s John Dillon reached first on a walk, and advanced on a single
to center by Vincent Cortina. With runners on first and second, Matt Brown
ripped a double to the gap in right-center field scoring both runners, with
Brown now at second as the game-tying run. In steps Junior Evan Nichols to
the plate, who crushed a fast ball to deep right-center for a dramatic
two-run homerun, and suddenly Belmont had the lead. In the bottom of the
seventh inning Belmont retired Lynnfield 1-2-3 on infield ground balls,
resulting in a final score of Belmont 11 and Lynnfield 10 and Belmont
snatching the Tournament crown.
In three innings and with their backs against the wall, Belmont had rallied
for 10 runs for a stunning come-from-behind victory. It was an unbelievable
sequence that surprised everyone, resulting in a baseball game that will not
be forgotten for a long time. Belmont is now looking forward to the upcoming
State Tournament play-offs and hoping to ride the momentum and positive
energy of this unlikely comeback. This year’s MVP trophy went to Evan
Nichols, who hit the long ball at the most opportune moment to bring the
victory to Belmont.
All four teams showed lots of talent and demonstrated plenty of excellent
baseball. With Belmont as the overall winner, Lynnfield placed in the number
two runner-up slot, followed by Winchester and then Austin Prep.
for all the details on last year's tournament contest. The standings since
the tournament first began are:
2005: (1) Lynnfield, (2) Winchester, (3) Belmont, (4) Bedford
2006: (1) Lynnfield, (2) Belmont, (3) Winchester, (4) Bedford
2007: (1) Belmont, (2) Austin Prep, (3) Winchester, (4) Lynnfield
2008: (1) Belmont, (2) Austin Prep, (3) Winchester, (4) Lynnfield
2009: (1) Winchester, (2) Lynnfield, (3) Belmont, (4) Austin Prep
2010: (1) Belmont, (2) Lynnfield, (3) Winchester, (4) Austin Prep
Adding to this year's excitement was a parallel whiffle ball tournament
organized for local 9 and 10 year olds participating in Belmont Little
League. Approximately 70 youngsters participated on eight teams that played
on an adjacent field. A series of games provided a "mini" tournament that
produced alot of smiles. Special thanks are due to Bob Goodwin, David Miers
and multiple others who organized and ran this whiffle ball tournament.
Numerous volunteers were instrumental in putting this year's tournament
together, helping with refreshments, team support, and making sure the field
and facility were in fantastic shape so that the entire event ran smoothly.
Most heartfelt thanks have to be given to the following individuals and
companies who, without their generosity, this tournament could not have
AA Rental in Watertown MA for assistance with the cooking equipment;
James J. Duffy, Inc for donating all the bottled water that kept everyone
with plenty of liquid;
Larry Scafidi at Embassy Trophy in Waltham MA for assisting with the
trophies and plaques given to the winning team players;
Steven Pugliese and Guido's Restaurant in Cambridge, MA for donating much of
the food items and ice; and
Holovak & Coughlin Sporting Goods in Arlington MA for donating the T-Shirts;
The long list of volunteers is likewise noteworthy, and a tip-of-the-cap
goes to all the dedicated volunteers that assisted throughout the
tournament. Special thanks goes to former BHS baseball coach Pete Noone for
helping to organize the event and championing the activity behind the scene.
Additional thanks goes to Belmont Athletic Director Jim Davis, Belmont
Trainer Sarkis Asadoorian, and the Belmont School System, as well as the
dependable crew of the Belmont Grounds and Recreation Department for keeping
the field in top shape.
As those who attended will tell you, tshe ixth annual Brendan Grant Memorial
Day Baseball Tournament provided incredible excitement and some top quality
good old fashioned high school baseball that won’t soon be forgotten. Again,
our heartfelt thanks go out to all who helped make the event a success. We
hope to see you at next year’s tournament!