Defending champion Staples secured the top seed in the FCIAC Tournament with a 9-0 win over Brien McMahon. Norwalk is on the verge elimination after losing to Danbury, 5-4.
The softball pairings are set pending the result of the Ludlowe-Trumbull game. The winner of that game will be the No. 4 seed and host the loser, which will be the fifth seed, in Tuesday’s first round. The other quarterfinal games: No. 8 Trinity Catholic at No. 1 St. Joseph, No. 7 Stamford at No. 2 Darien and No. 6 Staples at No. 3 Westhill.
In baseball, Ridgefield beat St. Joseph 9-3 and Stamford beat Bassick 11-0.
The pairings have not been finalized, but St. Joseph defeated Ridgefield, 14-2, to eliminate the Tigers. The teams in the playoffs are St. Joseph, Darien, Westhill, Trumbull, Fairfield Ludlowe, Stamford, Trinity Catholic and Staples.
In terms of figuring out seedings for next week’s baseball and softball tournaments, the baseball pairings are completely up in the air. It is possible depending on outcomes that as many as four teams could be tied for the best record. Staples will be the No. 1 seed with a win over McMahon.
In softball, the top three seeds are set: St. Joseph is No. 1, Darien is 2 and Westhill is 3. It is also possible four teams — Stamford, Trinity Catholic, Ridgefield and Staples — could be tied for the final three spots. Ridgefield would be the odd team out in a tiebreaker. It is very possible there could be an intracity battle between Stamford and Trinity in the first round of the playoffs on Tuesday.
The FCIAC baseball and softball playoffs will be finalized today, the last of the regular season. We will keep you updated with pertinent scores as they come in and seedings as they are determined.
I have several pet peeves — I hate getting awakened in the morning and thus turn off my phones before I go to sleep — and one of them is fans who argue strike calls at games.
I don’t know if it is happening more often or my tolerance has been worn down, but there seems to be an inordinate amount of complaints emanating from the stands this spring every time a perceived strike is called a ball.
My question: unless you are standing directly behind home plate, how can you tell? There is no way of knowing from a side angle, even if you have a close view, which most fans don’t.
I had one person tell me last week that you can tell by how a catcher sets up. Well what if the catcher is setting up out of the strike zone?
My parents were pretty good on the carrots when I was a kid, but I can’t call balls or strikes when I cover games and I am almost certain fans cannot either.
But that is not going to stop them from continuing to whine.
When I came up with the idea at the start of the spring to have guest bloggers take us inside the world of high school sports through the season, I was optimistic but not certain where the project would go. All I know is I felt like the coach of an expansion team blessed with a great deal of promising players.
Now the results are in: this series has far exceeded my expectations. I have had people from all over the county comment on how much they have enjoyed reading the postings from my lineup of players, coach and parent.
All the credit goes to six great people who have not only taken the time but given a lot of thought into what they write — Emily Powers, Sammi Nemchek, Mike Nemchek, Bobby Horn, Steven Rivera and Fred Kelley.
Thus, I have decided to make the guest bloggers a regular series and start it up again in the fall. The only problem will be finding another group as talented. Now I know what it is like to be a high school coach who has to prepare for the following season with all his best players graduated.
When Advocate staff writer Rich DePreta returned from covering the Stamford city boys outdoor track championships, he asked me if he could borrow this space for a commentary on what he views is the FCIAC’s lack of respect for natural rivalries in the sport. Of course I agreed: it is nice to have someone other than myself accused of stirring up a little controversy.
So here is an opinion from the person affectionately known around our newsroom as The Deacon:
By Rich DePreta
Westhill High School, Stamford High and Trinity Catholic have a long tradition of competing for a Stamford city championship in both boys and girls outdoor track.
Well, a strange thing happened Tuesday at Westhill’s J. Walter Kennedy Athletic Complex as the Vikings, Black Knights and Crusaders were warming up for the meet. The Fairfield Ludlowe and Fairfield Warde boys arrived to take part in the meet.
The silliest part of all this was the FCIAC actually planned things this way. And this isn’t the first year things have been done like this.
My question is simply this: Why are city championships revered in every other FCIAC sport — fall, winter and spring — but rendered totally meaningless in boys outdoor track?
While accepting the fact that rain can play some havoc with an outdoor track schedule, why is it not possible for the FCIAC administrators who put together the schedule to designate one day for meets between intracity rivals?
Who decided that Central, Bassick and Harding don’t want to compete against each other in Bridgeport¹s Kennedy Stadium? Do Brien McMahon and Norwalk have no interest in competing mano-a-mano? How did the FCIAC come to the conclusion that a Warde vs. Ludlowe meet in Fairfield, a St. Joseph vs. Trumbull meet in Trumbull, a Ridgefield vs. Danbury or Darien vs. New Canaan suburban rivalry was of no interest to anyone?
The single city schools remaining (Staples, Wilton, Greenwich) could hold their regular FCIAC meet on that one day.
So why couldn’t this occur in the 2009 season?
The powers that crafted the schedule made sure that perennial powers Darien and Ridgefield could compete in the Loucks Games in White Plains, N.Y., on May 9. Or that Staples could go to the Hartford Public Invitational that same day.
They also made sure the royalty of Ridgefield, Danbury, Staples and Darien took part in the Dan O’Grady Relays in Danbury on April 25.
Adjustments were made to the FCIAC regular season schedule so these teams would not be overworked those weeks.
So why is a concept that would impact 16 FCIAC teams in a positive manner just tossed out the window?
It appears that some of the FCIAC girls outdoor track coaches have some ingenuity. The Westhill, Trinity and Stamford High girls were able to hold their city championship on April 13, with only Bassick there as outside witnesses. The New Canaan and Darien girls faced off by themselves that same day. The Norwalk and McMahon girls did battle with only Ludlowe there on April 27.
If the person in charge of making the boys track schedule is too busy to consider such outlandish ideas, perhaps the answer is to have someone with more time, more imagination and more interest in the welfare of ALL of the teams to fashion the schedule for 2010.
That person could start on the computer NOW to help make city championships in boys outdoor track a reality in 2010.
It’s time for the meek to inherit the schedule.