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Raiders baseball in for a long day on Friday.

POSTED May 20, 2011
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney


With their regular season schedule all but thrown in the river with the deluge of rain we have had this week, The Torrington boys will be scrambling to complete their remaining games and prepare themselves for the post-season.

The Raiders will certainly have themselves a long day on Friday, no matter what.

First off, a majority of the team (along with hundreds of their friends) will be at the high school at 4:30 a.m. (that is not a misprint) for WFSB Channel 3’s “Cool School” series.

After trying not to nod off during classes, the Raiders will take to the field at Fuessenich Park for the first of what they might call, the ‘Route 8’ Series.

Torrington will take on Wilby in the first game which is scheduled to start at 2:30 p.m. followed by a second game at 6:30 p.m. at Municipal Stadium in Waterbury against Sacred Heart.

Much is at stake in these two games and their outcome will go a long way towards deciding when the Raiders play again and more.

“If we take both games, we win the Copper Division title,” head coach Gerry Carbone said, “But I am also using my top two pitchers (Pat Austin and Joe Mateo) Friday. We have heard the NVL Tournament may start on Monday, meaning neither of these guys would be ready.”

Taking care of today has always been the way Carbone operates and Friday will be no exception.

“I have held back pitchers before to try and play the weather and got burned,” Carbone said, “We’ll just take care of business today and worry about next week when it comes.”

At last check, day one of the NVL’s would start with doubleheaders at two locations on Monday.

Municipal would host one twin-bill at 4 and 7 p.m. while Naugatuck High School’s Legenza Field would host two games at the same times.

The semi-finals are scheduled to be played on Tuesday with both games played at Municipal at 4 and 7 p.m.

At present, the finals would be played on Thursday at Municipal at 6:30 p.m.

Now, all this is based on the weather behaving, which it has shown no desire to do of late.

Currently, the Raiders (15-3) are also ranked number one in Class L and own the tie-breaker but there are teams right behind them with four and five losses.

Getting a couple of home games is always a plus so today’s games take even more meaning.

In their only game this week, the Raiders were embarrassed by Kennedy 15-3 in a game that defied what this team had shown all season.

“We just didn’t show up,” Carbone said, “It was the last thing I expected from them but now it is time for them to take ownership of their season. They are the ones who will determine how far they go. We talked a lot today about the mental part of the game as much as anything physical we had done wrong.”

The Torrington defense, a staple most of the season, has fallen off the tracks the few days and needs to right the engine in a hurry.

Torrington beat Wilby by a 5-4 score at Municipal back on April 27 and topped Sacred Heart by a 4-3 score at home on April 21.

Two close games. Wilby comes in with a 12-6 record and will also be looking to improve their state rankings in Class S.

Sacred Heart stands with a 7-10 mark with three to play and will have played a game against St Paul Friday afternoon at 3:45 at Municipal by the time Torrington arrives.

A busy day is on tap for certain, with a lot on the line.

NOTES: If the Raiders feel good later in the day on Friday, it may be because of the treats donated from Tony’s Coffee Express in Thomaston. Former THS boys basketball coach, Tony Turina, will be up early delivering 25 dozen energy-filled donuts for his Raiders. Great job coach!



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