Photos by Fritz Rethage
Friday, June 8th was a perfect night for baseball, as the Hasbrouck Heights Little League held it's championship game between the Lions Club and the Elks Club. The Lions came out with their bats swinging. Dominic D'Alessandro started the game with an infield single. After a walk to Taylor Condal put two runners on base, Sean Mansfield, Jamie Pasqualone, Mark Dulhagen, and Joey Del Calzo all followed with clutch hits to give the Lions an early 5-0 lead.
The Elks and their pitcher, Michael Wendolowski, settled down and would shut down the Lions for the next three innings. Meanwhile, the Elks began to get their bats going against Lions ace pitcher Sean Mansfield. Key hits by Bobby Spindler, Michael Wendolowski, and Andrew Duda closed the Lions lead to 5-2. The Elks also tightened up their defense, with centerfielder Danny Fitzgibbons robbing Mark Dulhagen of an extra base hit.
It wasn't until the fourth inning that the Lions bats would produce more runs. A leadoff single by Taylor Condal, a fielders choice by Sean Mansfield, and key hits by Jamie Pasqualone and Joey Del Calzo extended the lead to 7-2.
The Elks came charging back. Clutch hits, including a perfect bunt single by Danny Fitzgibbons and a timely hit by Matt Meseck helped the Elks close the score to 7-4.
It would now be up to the Lions fielders and pitcher Sean Mansfield to hold off the Elks. Shortstop Mark Dulhagen and second baseman Taylor Condal each made nice fielding plays for the first two outs in the final inning. The Elks then got two runners on base as Bobby Spindler and Mike Wendolowski started a final inning rally. With runners on 2nd and 3rd, Elks catcher Vinny Del Guidice, the league's leading home run hitter, stepped to the plate as the potential tying run. He hit a hard smash to third base. It was perfectly fielded by third baseman Joey Del Calzo, who threw to first baseman Jamie Pasqualone for the games final out.
Both teams are to be congratulated for outstanding seasons. The Lions record for the season was 13-1. It is the second consecutive year that the Lions have been Little League Champions. The Lions players are Dominic D'Alessandro, Joey Delcalzo, Sean Mansfield, Jamie Pasqualone, Taylor Condal, Mark Dulhagen, Joey Olivo, Michael Rosa, Anthony Del Calzo, Micheal Messeri, George Spearman, and Mackenzie Stenger. The team is managed by Randy Mansfield. Assistant coaches are Phil Pasqualone, Mark Dulhagen and Greg Condal.
The Elks players are Vinny Del Guidice, Ed Kwon, Oscar Galvis, Bobby Spindler, Mike Wendolowski, Andrew Duda, Matt Meseck, Dave Palmieri, Ricky Beneduci, Danny Fitzgibbons, PJ Olobardi, and John Segreto. The team is managed by Bob Spindler. Assistant coaches are Gerard Wendolowski, Lou Del Guidice, Paul Meseck, Dave Palmeiri, and Rick Crecco.
Special thanks to annoucer Jim
Olobardi, scorekeeper Joe Messeri, concession stand organizers Gary Meister and Michele
Zahn, and the hundreds of fans who came out to support the players and league on this
action-packed, exciting, and well played game.
you for visiting our hometown. Come back soon!