It's Monday, and you know what that means. It's time for the Sports Buzz, the fastest three minutes in Brookline sports coming your way right now:
We're back on the diamond, and stung by stingy defense and hurt by a pair of two-out rallies, the Brookline 'A' baseball team fell, 6-2, to South End in the Lou Tompkins championship at Belmont's Brendan Grant Memorial Field.
South End’s strong "D" was at its best when Brookline attempted to mount a comeback in the last inning. With a pair of runners on base and two outs, Alex Moses-Gardner drilled a line drive to left field, but the speedy Cruz Santana made a terriic outstretched diving catch to end the ballgame.
“They made a couple of key catches in situations where we didn’t make a key play,” Brookline head coach John Bucci said.
“South End got the big hits when they needed them," the coach added. "We made a couple of key errors. We walked a couple too many guys. We’re a good team. They’re a good team. They played a little better than we did today.”
Offensively, Brookline started fast as Moses-Gardner led off the game with a double to center. After Scott Cordner bunted for a single, Moses-Gardner scored on a force out at second.
But South End responded in the bottom of the stanza as Brendon Ruiz ripped an RBI double with two outs, as Santana came across. Chris Delouchrey singled in Ruiz, and Bryanne Toney followed with another RBI double.
In the second inning, Brookline got a run back when Nate Spielvogel's infield hit plated Shiraz Mumtaz, cutting the deficit to 3-2.
But another two-out rally by South End hurt Brookline in the third. With the bases loaded, Toney was hit by a pitch as Chris Moreta scored. South End added two more insurance runs in the sixth.
Despite the loss, Bucci was thirlled with his team's effort this season.
“I’m so proud of this team,” Bucci said. “This team has just exceeded my expectations. They’re a great bunch of guys. I had a lot of new guys coming into this season, and I frankly didn’t expect to be here today."
Meanwhile, in the 'C' Division, Framingham staved off a Brookline rally to advance in the tourney with a 12-6 win.
Playing in drizzly rain, Framingham built a 10-0 lead before Brookline scored six runs. Framingham added two more to secure the win.
And now our columnist Adrienne Kerman chimes in with this bit of terrific sports news:
(The following was written by Adrienne Kerman)
My sons just finished yet another season of baseball. The summer season started in late June with two scrimmage games at field and ended 20 games later on a drizzly August Sunday afternoon with 11 eleven-year-olds whooping, hollering and high-fiving a championship win that came complete with enormous, glittering gold trophies.
The whole Brookline 11U team worked so hard for those trophies. They overcame some early, heartbreaking losses and bouts of extreme July heat. I’m proud of my children. They pitched well, hit well and fielded well. But like all little-leaguers, sometimes they gave up runs; sometimes they made errors; and sometimes they struck out. But they were always eager to get back on that mound, and always ready to face down the fastest of pitchers. They arrived at each game with a smile on their face and an unwavering drive to win. They cheered on their teammates who cheered for them right back. They congratulated the other team when they won, and offered a heartfelt “good game” when they didn’t. Their whole team earned those trophies with more than just good play and good luck. They earned them with their perseverance, their sportsmanship, their hard work, and their spirit. That’s the beauty of baseball, after all. And there’s nothing more beautiful than the smiles on those kids' faces when they accepted their trophies.
Their father and I worked hard for those trophies too. Our dreams of relaxing weekends at our summer shack in Maine (the driving force that kept us going throughout the long winter, mind you) became, in reality, a series of forever-long car trips, inching along in traffic on 93, 90, or 95, searching out well hidden baseball fields tucked away somewhere in Sudbury, Winchester, Medford, Bedford, Framingham and other towns whose names have already faded into the blur of it all.
Romantic dinners with my husband--with a steaming Maine lobster, a perfectly chilled bottle of wine, and crisp crème brulee--in reality consisted of cold hot dogs at the concession stand, a couple of lukewarm bottles of water, and a few Swedish fish bummed off the boys. We’d often question the sanity of it all. The boys already played spring and fall ball, did we really have to sign away our summer too? Of course, the answer is yes. And if you have a baseball kid, you know that. So there's nothing to do for it but put on a baseball cap, pack the cooler and hope the field has a port-a-potty.
Today, the coach’s wife reminded me of an back in February about the . I read it again and it made me smile. It seems nothing changes but the size of the uniform. As our children find the perfect spot in their bedrooms to display their trophy, my husband and I count how many free summer weekends we have left before the first fall ball practice.
Congratulations to the 11U Brookline champions! And an extra special congratulations to their parents. You all deserve trophies as well!
Peter Shanley, Bill Clapper, and Adrienne Kerman contributed to this report.