RISING SUN — Dominic Fareeno stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the seventh inning in a tie game, knowing full well the importance of the situation he faced.
Feereno delivered as he recorded a single, driving in Hunter Peteorosi to give Elkton a 2-1, walk-off, extra-inning victory over Chesapeake City in the opening round of the Major Baseball District 5 tournament at Rising Sun Little League on Monday.
“I was a little nervous because there was a lot of pressure. I knew that if it was in my zone, I was going to swing and hit it hard,” Fareeno said. “It was a fastball. It felt really exciting, and I felt really proud.”
The seventh-inning rally began when Peteorosi led things off with a walk and stole second and third, while Jamie LaManna followed with a walk and a stolen base to put runners on second and third with no outs.
Following a strikeout, Gavin Bolender was intentionally walked to set the stage for Fareeno. After a brief meeting with Elkton manager James LaManna, Fareeno directed a 1-1 pitch to the opposite field, delivering a fly ball down the right-field line. The hit landed fair, setting off a celebration as Fareeno was mobbed by his teammates near second base.
“While the pitcher was warming up, I went up to [Fareeno] and told him, ‘I don’t care if you strike out, don’t go down looking. Get your pitch and drive it somewhere,’ James LaManna said. “That’s exactly what he did.”
The game was a tense pitcher’s duel that did not see any scoring until the top of the fourth inning when Chesapeake City scored one run on a George Cook RBI single that plated Brody Vaughan.
Elkton responded in the bottom of the fourth inning when Gavin Bolender stole home on a throw back to the pitcher.
Both Chesapeake City pitcher Daniel Racine and Elkton hurler Trey Cool pitched five innings, giving up just one run each.
The victory puts Elkton in the winners’s bracket and makes its road to the finals of the tournament slightly easier.
“The first win is the biggest win. It’s the hardest one to get, and you gain build from there,” James LaManna said.
Havre de Grace 29, Perryville 2
Havre de Grace advanced to face Rising Sun on Tuesday.
Perryville will face the loser of Tuesday’s game between Elkton and North East.