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Belmont brings home title

12U all-stars sweep Newfound in finals for District 6 Cal Ripken crown

by Jeff Lajoie
Sports Reporter

The Belmont 12U All-Star team poses with the championship trophy after winning the District 6 Cal Ripken Tournament in Meredith on June 26. Jeff Lajoie. (click for larger version)
July 02, 2012
MEREDITH It may have taken two days, but the Belmont 12U all-star baseball team captured its first District 6 title in dominating fashion on June 26.

Belmont took advantage of a plethora of Newfound errors and locked things down defensively when needed en route to a 12-2 win to complete a two-game sweep of Newfound in the finals of the District 6 Cal Ripken Tournament held at Prescott Park in Meredith.

After taking care of business with a 7-4 win in Game 1 on June 25, Belmont got off to a strong start in Game 2, which began immediately after under the lights. The Raiders led 8-2 in the third inning and appeared poised to pull away for the title. Mother Nature had other ideas however, as lightning and torrential downpours halted the game in the third inning, with a Belmont runner on second base. After a 15-minute delay, the game was called off for the night, with action suspended until the next night.

While some teams may have been affected by a full night to think about things, Belmont showed no signs of slowing down when play resumed. In the fifth inning, Mikey Sprague singled and scored on an error, and Cole Contigiani followed with a two-run double to make it 11-2. Contigiani would later score on a wild pitch to account for the 12-2 final.

On the mound, Contigiani was just as dominant. The right-hander struck out the final two batters he faced to secure the victory and bring the title home to Belmont.

Winning the title was especially impressive for Belmont considering it was the team's first season in Cal Ripken ball. But the Raiders also won games over Gilford, Lakes Region and Franklin in the tournament to advance to the finals and sweep the best-of-three series with Newfound. Belmont became the fifth different 12U champion in District 6 in the last five years. Gilford (2011), Mount Washington Valley (2010), Farmington (2009) and Newfound (2008) also won titles.

Belmont now advances to the Cal Ripken state tournament, which is scheduled to be played in Claremont July 7-12.

The roster for the 12U all-star team, coached by Chris Brown, John Thurber and Chuck Taylor, included Colby Brown, Caleb Burke, Cole Contigiani, Miles DeFosses, Caleb Duggan, Marc Forgione, Alex Giammarino, Brett Lima, Aiden Rupp, Mikey Sprague, Matt Thurber and Tanner Woods.

The Belmont U10 team failed to reach the best-of-three game finals in their bracket, which featured Gilford against Franklin for the title. The team did manage to pick up wins on the weekend however, as they edged Gilford, 8-7, and also beat Merrimack Valley, 7-4, for a successful trip to Meredith.

The roster for the 10U all-star team, coached by Brett Sottak, Larry Major and Dave Gilbert, included Austin Garrett, Zach Gilbert, Dylan Greer, Keith Landry, Cam Magerer, Lars Major, Will Robarge, Jackson Ruelke, Ryan Sacrey, Aaron Simonds, Nate Sottak and Connor Young.

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