American Legion Juniors get on track with four wins

Erik Lebek turned in a strong performance on the mound for the Wilton American Legion Post 86 Junior team in last Friday’s 3-2 win over Stamford. — J.B. Cozens photo
Erik Lebek turned in a strong performance on the mound for the Wilton American Legion Post 86 Junior team in last Friday’s 3-2 win over Stamford. — J.B. Cozens photo

After an 0-8 start, the Wilton American Legion Post 86 Junior squad reeled off four wins in a row last week, before two tough losses to Trumbull this past weekend.

Post 86 (4-10) won for the fourth time in five days on Saturday, defeating Trumbull 3-2 in the first game of a doubleheader. Erik Lebek got the win, allowing seven hits and two runs over six and two-third innings, with three walks and three strikeouts.

Dante Esposito came in with two outs in the top of the seventh and the bases loaded. He walked his first batter but got the final out on a grounder to short.

Wilton broke a 1-1 tie with two runs in the fifth. John McMahon singled and scored on a throwing error on Daniel Ielusic’s bunt. Ielusic scored on an RBI single by Andrew Travers.

For the game, Travers was 2-for-3, with other hits by McMahon, Patrick Cummins and Shane McCaghey.

In Saturday’s second game, Trumbull jumped out to a 5-0 lead and scored an 8-5 win.

Parker Ward went 3-for-5 with a triple, and Reagan Kahal and McMahon both were 2-for-4 with doubles. Travers and John Walsh both had a hit and two walks and Ielusic also had a hit. Aidan Kyle had two walks. Cam Case and Chris Eidt each had one walk.

In the final game of the series on Sunday, Wilton rallied for four runs in the top of the seventh but fell just short in an 8-7 loss.

Trumbull had plated four runs in the fifth to take an 8-3 lead. In the seventh, walks by Kyle and Kahal, and singles by Warde and Travers, scored one run, and an RBI groundout by McCaghey scored another. After walk by Case, Lebek’s RBI single made it 8-6, and McMahon’s RBI grounder made it 8-7. A walk by Ielusic loaded the bases with two outs, but Trumbull escaped with the win by getting a flyball out to end the game.

Travers (3-for-4, 3 RBIs) and Ward (2-for-4, two runs) led the offense. McCaghey was 1-for-3 with a walk, two RBIs and run scored, with other hits by Eidt and Lebek. Ielusic had three walks and Kyle and Case each had two walks.

Wilton notched its first win of the season with a 9-0 defeat of Bridgeport on June 19. Esposito was the winning pitching, allowing no runs and only one hit over five innings. He struck out seven and walked one. Connor Burke threw the final two innings, allowing no hits and only one walk.

Getting two hits and two RBIs each were Kahal (double), Travers and McCaghey. Ielusic, Kyle (triple), Case (2 RBIs) and Eidt also had hits. Scoring two runs each were Ielusic, Kyle, Max English and Case.

On Wednesday, Post 86 blew out Bridgeport, 27-3. Case was the winning pitcher, going four innings in relief and allowing three runs (two earned) on five hits and a walk.

Case also led the offense, going 3-for-5 with three RBIs and two runs scored. Kyle was 3-for-3 with two walks, three RBIs and five runs scored.

Getting two hits each were Travers (2-for-2, double, three walks, five runs, two RBIs), McMahon (2-for-3, doubles, two walks, four RBIs, two runs) and Cummins (2-for-2, double, two RBIs, run).

Lebek had a home run, two RBIs and a walk, and scored twice.

Also with base hits were Ward (three runs), Kahal (double), and Burke (double, two RBIs).

Last Thursday, Post 86 won a marathon over Bridgeport, 12-7, in 13 innings.

Bridgeport forced extra innings with a five-run rally in the bottom of the seventh.

In the top of the 13th, a single by Kyle and walks by Eidt and Walsh loaded the bases, with runs scoring when McMahon singled and Ielusic was hit by pitch. Lebek followed with a two-run single and Ielusic later stole third and scored on a throwing error.

For the game, Ward had four hits with a double and walk, and Kyle also had four hits. Ielusic and McMahon each had two hits, with other hits by Lebek (two RBIs) and Eidt. Walsh walked three times. Scoring two runs each were Kyle, Ielusic, Eidt, Walsh and McMahon.

Kyle pitched the final four innings to get the win, allowing no runs, four hits and two walks.