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BCB 11-year-olds welcomed home as champions

August 9, 2011
Town Crier
Boardman baseball fans took to the Fields of Dreams on Saturday, Aug. 6 to welcome home their 11-year-old state champs. During a ceremony officiated by Boardman Community Baseball's Chad Miller and Boardman Trustee Brad Calhoun, the boys and their families were honored with signs proclaiming the entrance to the Fields of Dreams as "State Champ Drive."

Hailed as memories they will cherish forever, the boys will also be honored with a proclamation at the Aug. 22 township trustee's meeting.

The team won the state title on Aug. 5 beating Tallmadge in a tough rematch, 4-3. The team played in Hamilton all last week as they progressed through the grid to come down to the finals on Friday.

Boardman took an early lead with one run in the second inning when Dominic Stilliana scored off of a Noah Falleti double.

The locals suffered a setback in the fourth inning when Tallmadge's Ty Shannon hit a three-run homer.

In the fifth inning, Sean Buck took a base on balls, while Cunningham hit for a single and an RBI and Dominic Pecchia hit a double to add another point to the scoreboard, tying the game.

In the final at-bat, Tallmadge was unable to score.

In the bottom of the sixth, Bryan Kordupel smashed a triple to deep right field to start. Stilliana walked and Falleti singled to load the bases. Jarod Wilson took to the plate and nailed one to right field for a sac fly that brought in Kordupel to nail the win.

The winning pitcher in the finals was Michael Melewski, who relieved Mike Cunningham in the sixth inning. 

The Boardman 11-year-olds went 19-1 on the season and won the state tournament outright as the only undefeated team.

On the way to the championship, on Aug. 3, the 11-year-olds beat Tallmadge, 3-2, in the semifinal round.

The winning pitcher on Wednesday was Bobby Toth, who ruled the mound for all six innings. Key hits in the win came off the bats of Cunningham, Stilliana and Dominic Pecchia, Toth and Michael Melewski. 

Tallmadge took an early lead scoring two runs in the first inning. While playing fierce defense, it took the locals until the fourth inning to answer the call, bringing in two runs of their own to tie the game.

Still tied at two in the bottom of the sixth, with two outs, Dante Beato hit a shot to right centerfield. With Sean Buck rounding third and the throw coming in, the Tallmadge catcher hit the dirt and Buck high-stepped over him to score the winning run.

The team also defeated the hometown squad, West Side Hamilton Little League, 5-1 on Aug. 1 and Guernsey Little League, 8-6 on July 31.

In the first game of the series, the all stars beat Dover Little League, 10-6 on July 30. Pecchia nailed a two-run homer in the first inning and Kordupel added a solo homer in the fourth.

Team members include team members Evan Knaus, Bobby Toth, Sean Buck, Dominic Stilliana, Bryan Kordupel, Dante Beato, Michael Cunningham, Luciano Cardillo, Jarod Wilson, Michael Melewski, Dominic Pecchia and Noah Falleti. They were managed by Ted Melewski, and coaches included Joe Cunningham, Tony Stilliana and Jeff Wilson.

Article Photos

Photo by Jim McCreary, Town Crier correspondent
Boardman baseball players and fans follow their 11-year-old state champs into their welcome home celebration at the Fields of Dreams, Saturday, Aug. 6.



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