Ridgefield All-Stars ousted in LL district tourney

After opening the District 1 tournament with a no-hit victory, the Ridgefield Little League 11/12-year-old All-Star team dropped its next two pool-play games and failed to advance to the championship round of the playoffs.

Needing a win in its final Pool A game against Wilton on Sunday morning, Ridgefield fell 6-0 at Aldrich Field. The loss followed a 7-4 setback to Stamford American on Saturday in Darien.

With a 1-2 record, Ridgefield finished third in Pool A and sixth in the combined standings. The top-five teams advanced to the double-elimination championship bracket.

Ridgefield will now compete in the consolation bracket against Darien and Norwalk.

Ridgefield began the tournament with an 8-0 triumph over Darien last Wednesday at McGuane Field in Darien.

Felix Maisonet, Jacob Voellmicke, and Ben D'Antonio combined to pitch a no-hitter for Ridgefield. Maisonet started and pitched the first four innings, walking five batters and striking out six. Voellmicke went one and two-thirds innings, and D'Antonio came on to retire the only batter he faced in the sixth inning.

Ridgefield erupted for six runs in the bottom of the second. After singles by Voellmicke and Slade Palmer, Mason Smith delivered an RBI single for Ridgefield. Matthew Ciminiello then added a sacrifice fly to put Ridgefield ahead 2-0. Ian Brown singled and D'Antonio walked to load the bases with two outs, and Lucas Carfi followed with a grand slam to right-center field.

Maisonet walked two Darien batters in the top of third before getting a pop-out and a strikeout to escape unscathed.

Aidan Dennis walked to lead off the bottom of the third for Ridgefield and went to second on a wild pitch. John-Michael Macko reached on a bunt single, but Dennis was thrown out at the plate on Jason Boxer's fielder's choice. Macko then scored on a passed ball, and Ciminiello came through with a bloop single to score Boxer and give Ridgefield an 8-0 lead.

Maisonet allowed a walk to start the top of the fourth but then struck out the next three batters to keep Darien scoreless.

Voellmicke relieved Maisonet in the fifth and retired Darien in order on a strikeout and two pop-ups.

Strong defensive plays by D'Antonio at third base and Ciminiello at shortstop helped Voellmicke get the first two outs in the top of the sixth. D'Antonio then came on in relief and needed only one pitch to secure the no-hitter, getting a groundout to second to end the game.

Brown finished with two hits for Ridgefield. Ciminiello, Carfi, Palmer, Macko, and Smith added one hit apiece, with Carfi's grand slam doing the most damage.

In Saturday's game against Stamford American, Ridgefield took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Ciminiello led off with an infield single, and Brown followed with a long two-run homer to center field.

But Stamford American responded with seven runs in the top of the second. The rally included a three-run homer by Joey Pascarella and a solo homer by Johnny Frattaroli. Brown made a nice catch in center field to prevent a potential two-run homer and get the third out.

Ridgefield loaded the bases with three walks in the bottom of the second but was unable to score.

With Ridgefield still trailing 7-2, Brown opened the bottom of the fifth by reaching via a passed ball on a dropped third strike. Carfi then blasted a two-run homer to center field to trim Stamford American's lead to 7-4.

But Ridgefield was unable to score again, going down in order in the bottom of the sixth to end the game.

Voellmicke started for Ridgefield and went one and one-third innings. Dennis and Carfi pitched in relief.

Carfi was 2-for-3 with a homer and two RBIs to lead the Ridgefield offense. Ciminiello, Brown (homer), and Palmer had one hit apiece, and Macko drew three walks.