Legion team hitting stride as playoffs approach

MIDDLEBURY — The Addison County American Legion baseball team held on to second place in the Northeast Division and improved to an overall record of 30–9 after a busy week. With two games left in the regular season, AC appears to be in good shape heading into the state tournament, which will take place July 23-26 at Castleton State College.

On Saturday, AC won both games in a league double-header against Franklin County. AC led most of the first game, but Franklin County evened the score at 10 with a two-run homerun in the top of the seventh.

Then, AC’s Jackson Alexander scored Dylan Bresnick in a walk-off suicide squeeze in the bottom of the seventh, handing AC an 11-10 victory.

The second game Saturday was more a story of dominance — AC’s Colin Curler threw 85 pitches in a three-hit shutout, leading his team to a 5-0 win.

AC was back at it Sunday, when pitcher Logan Williams emerged as a hero in a 2-1 victory in an early game at South Burlington. Williams pitched a complete game five-hitter and scored both runs for AC. The team also beat South Burlington 9-3 in a non-league game later that day.

Monday night, AC fell to Montpelier on the road in a 12-7 loss. Montpelier pulled ahead early after AC pitcher Sean Harrison gave up 10 earned runs. Despite scoring six runs in the top of the fifth with the help of back-to-back homers from Kyle Kayhart and Ben Orbis, AC could not overcome Montpelier’s early lead.

Since Waterbury forfeited the remainder of its season due to a lack of players, AC has just two games left in the regular season.

The team will head to Essex Thursday for a 5:30 p.m. start. Essex is still undefeated in league play and has a solid hold on first place in the Northeast Division.

AC’s will close out the regular season at Burlington High School in a game against Burlington Saturday at 4 p.m.

AC coach Mike Estey thinks his team is playing well heading into the state tournament the weekend after next.

“Day in and day out we play great defense, and we seem to score a lot of runs,” he said. “The question mark is pitching.”

He hopes that pitcher Ben Orbis, who has been suffering from shoulder soreness, can get healthy in time for the tournament.

“If we can get Ben healthy, we’ll be in good shape,” he said.

Reporter George Altshuler is at [email protected].

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