MADISON, NJ- The Madison Dodgers baseball team fell short in their second round state sectional playoff game against Lyndhurst on Thursday afternoon by the score of 2-0.
Starting Dodger pitcher Brian Chinni left it all out on the diamond after an extremely well-thrown complete game. The lefty only allowed 2 runs, which did not come until the top of the sixth inning. Throwing almost 80 pitches over the 7 innings of work, he struck out three and walked just one.
Although the Dodger bats were held in check by the Lyndhurst pitching, they had a few opportunities to score. The first came in the bottom of the first inning, when with two outs starting second baseman Mike Martirano made solid contact and got on base with a single. He put himself in scoring position just a few pitches later when he stole second. Unfortunately, the opportunity ended with a Madison pop fly that accounted for the final out of the inning.
The Dodger defense was on display in the top of the fifth inning as Martirano made a diving stop on a ground ball smoked up the middle and completed the flip to second base to force out the lead runner. However, the Dodgers wouldn’t be out of trouble yet as Lyndhurst had 2 runners on with two outs. After delivering the pitch, Chinni made a great defensive stop on a weak ground ball coming back at him and threw out the hitter at first to end the inning and the scoring threat. The Madison defense was finally broken through in the top of the sixth inning, when with 2 on and 2 out they were able to squeak a single up the middle to score both runners and the eventual game winner.
The resilient Madison team would not concede defeat easily and would put themselves in a position to come back. After starting catcher Alex Park drew a walk, starting short stop Tim Azzolini hit an infield single by beating out the throw to first, the Dodgers had 2 on and only 1 out.
The Dodgers fell short due to a fantastic double play made by the Lyndhurst infield to end the game.
Although their season is over, the Madison baseball team finished with an even record of 14-14, and a first round state sectional playoff win to be proud of.
A congratulations goes out to the entire team on a great season, especially to the graduating seniors.