Navigators Win 2017 Championship
The Island Baseball League’s 7th season drew to a close on Saturday night (September 19) as the Aquidneck Islanders beat the Newport Storm 13-5 at Cardine’s Field in the championship game.
Islander Dean Spaulding began the scoring with a deep double to knock in leadoff hitter Gary DaSilva. Storm starting pitcher Paul Dumas struck out the next batter, but Scott Harkin ripped another double to put the Islanders up 2-0. Storm and Islander pitchers would strike out a combined 30 batters in the game.
In the 2nd inning, league founder Curtis Cord singled and stole 2nd and 3rd base, and then, with two out, Dougald Parkinson singled and knocked in a run. The Storm in the top of the 3rd came back to tie the score, highlighted by a booming double by Michael Petrarca. Jimmy Maher, who would reach base three times during the game, also scored. Matt Williams got the Islanders started in the bottom of the 3rd with a walk, and Kenny Payton drove in a 2nd run to put the Islanders up by 2.
In the bottom half of the 4th, with two out, singles by Matt Viana and Islanders captain Steve McBride added 3 more to the lead. But again the Storm started to come back as Charles Aboyoun singled and scored the first of 2 runs in the top of the 5th.
Storm Carl Melchar struck out the side in both the 5th and 6th, but the Islanders were able to push across 4 more runs, highlighted by Curtis Cord’s two-run single.
In top of the 7th Storm Chris Conforti lead off with his 2nd hit of the game, but winning pitcher Dean Spaulding struck out the next 3 batters to end the threat. Again in the 8th the Storm tried to climb back as they loaded the bases, only to have Islanders reliever Matt Viana strike out the next three batters and then retire the Storm in order in the top of the 9th to give the Islanders the victory.