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Mark Smith had single and a double with a run scored and a stolen base for the 89ers in a game against North Haven on July 16. (File photo by Kelley Fryer/The Courier | Buy This Photo)
Mike Streeto and the East Haven Senior Legion baseball team took a few defeats to finish out the 2019 season. Streeto had a productive series at the plate when the 89ers took on Branford during the final week. (File photo by Kelley Fryer/The Courier | Buy This Photo)
Frank Camera and the East Haven Senior Legion squad posted a mark of 3-23 in their first year with Head Coach Chuck Hinckley. (File photo by Kelley Fryer/The Courier | Buy This Photo)
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The East Haven Senior American Legion baseball team finished the 2019 summer season with a record of 3-23 after losing its last six games to close out the year. The 89ers took losses against Zone 2 opponents Wallingford, Branford, and North Haven to wrap up their first campaign with Chuck Hinckley as the club’s head coach.
East Haven started off its final week of the season by playing games versus Wallingford and Branford on July 14. In the first game, East Haven hosted Wallingford and lost by a 7-3 score. The 89ers fell behind 4-0 in the top of the first inning, but started to claw their way back by plating a run in the bottom of the first and another in second.
In the first inning, Frank Camera worked a walk and was later driven in on a RBI single by Steve Mingione. In the second inning, Jake Marquardt scored on a sacrifice fly from Jon Crisci. Later in the game, Anthony Buffone drilled a double that brought home Mingione for East Haven’s final run. Crisci pitched three strong innings of relief for East Haven in the loss.
Later that afternoon, East Haven had a home game with Branford and took an 11-0 defeat.
The very next day, the 89ers and Branford squared off at Branford High School, where East Haven dropped an 8-5 decision to Post 83. East Haven held the lead throughout the game, but Branford sored four runs with two outs in the sixth inning to come away with the victory.
East Haven got on the board in the first inning when Mark Smith singled to score Giro Esposito. In the third inning, Gianni Mumford singled, Mike Streeto walked, and both runners scored on an RBI single by Mingione later in the frame. Streeto, who finished the game with a single and three walks, scored on a wild pitch in the fifth inning. One inning later, Streeto drove in Esposito with an RBI single.
“We left a ton of base runners on. We had the bases loaded twice and left them loaded twice,” Coach Hinckley said. “We just needed a couple of late hits in that game.”
The 89ers took two defeats against North Haven on the road on July 16. North Haven won the first game by the final score of 7-0. In the second contest, East Haven lost to Post 76 by the score of 15-5 in five innings. North Haven scored eight runs during the fifth inning to put the game away.
East Haven scored four of its runs in the third inning. Marquardt and Matt Lisko scored on an RBI single by Esposito, after which Smith hit a double that brought home Esposito and Camera. In the fifth inning, Smith singled, stole second, and then scored on a single from Streeto.
On July 17, the 89ers took a 5-0 home loss to North Haven in their final game of the year. Lisko pitched six solid innings on the mound for East Haven, allowing three runs. North Haven scored its last two runs of the day in the seventh inning.
East Haven was scheduled to host New Haven for its regular-season finale on July 18. However, New Haven did not have enough players to field a team, and so the game was canceled.
Overall, it was a difficult season or the 89ers record wise, but Coach Hinckley was happy with the effort that his players showed each and every sweltering day this summer.
“We had a good core of players that have been with the program for a while, and they never quick, which is good,” said Hinckley. “They stayed together to the last night. They all played hard.”
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