A trio of local youth baseball teams are closing in on invitations to this year's Cal Ripken State Tournament. The HLBA's nine & 10-year-old squads are already in and the 12s are just one win away.

Three local all-star squads are on the cusp of qualifying for the 2011 Cal Ripken State Tournament.

The Honesdale Little Baseball Association’s 10-year-old team closed out an undefeated run through its bracket Tuesday evening in Forest City.

Under the direction of Coach Joe Curreri, the local lads eked out a 7-6 victory over the Foresters. This win clinched the District Five championship and propels Honesdale to states, which is being held this year in Douglassville.

The Home Front
Meanwhile, at the HLBA Grove Street Complex, the U-12 and U-9 teams were also on the very brink of district titles.

Coach Charlie Rollison’s 12s are one win away from the “big dance.”?The team opened its D-2 title quest with a 15-3 rout of Waymart, then added a 3-1 victory over Valley View.

On Tuesday, however, the 12s suffered a 10-0 loss at the hands of a powerhouse Forest City squad.

Honesdale’s 9-year-olds also began the tournament with back-to-back wins.
Led coaches Mike Bancroft and George Firmstone, the 9s defeated Forest City in Round One (11-2), then outlasted DV in an epic 9-inning clash (5-4).

Sadly for local fans, that winning streak came to an abrupt end Tuesday night at Fred Reich Memorial Field.

DV returned from a brief stint in the losers bracket to bang out a Mercy Rule shortened 14-1 victory.

HLBA’s 12s and 9s were slated to be back in action Wednesday evening. The top two teams in each of these age divisions will qualify for states.

On the Diamond
The HLBA’s U-10 squad closed out an undefeated run through its bracket on Tuesday night.

Cade?LaBracio earned the mound decision, striking out four Foresters en route to the win.

Beau Freiermuth and Anthony DeGori led the attack. Freiermuth hammered a homerun and DeGori ripped a triple.

This win was the third in as many games for Coach Curreri’s ballclub. The 10s downed Forest City, 18-12, and blanked Valley View by a score of 12-0.

Back in the Maple City, the HLBA 12s must battle their way back from a trip to the losers bracket after ab-sorbing a 10-0 setback.

Honesdale cruised in its opening assigment, scoring in every inning en route to a 15-3 triumph.

Tom Minella paced the Red &?Black attack with three hits. Jack Rickard chipped in with two.

In a 3-1 win over Valley View, Mark Ambrose enjoyed a perfect 3-for-3 day at the dish. Minella contributed two base knocks.

The HLBA 9s dominated Forest City in Game One, thanks to the pitching of Luke Bancroft and Steve Soden...each of whom went three innings.

Cole Bannan started in the marathon win over DV and worked five frames.
He received relief help from Soden and Bancroft.