BRANFORD — The lineup is vastly different from the last two summers when Branford had a veteran team, but the results are just the same.
Post 83 just keeps on winning.
Branford made it a perfect five wins in five outings Friday night with a 1-0 victory over Milford at George T. Dummar Jr. Field. Post 83 leads Zone 2 early in the season.
“We have a young team, but I expect to get better as the season goes on,” Branford coach Rich Balzano said. “New Haven is not going to be easy tomorrow (Saturday) and Sunday and then we have Orange next week. It gets tough.”
As it has in the past few years, Branford pitching was strong Friday night, Mike Keinz allowed just three hits in six innings, but was conveniently wild at times as he walked four, but fanned nine Milford batters
“I didn’t have my best control,” Keinz said. “My velocity was up and pitches were moving well, which kept them off balance. Four walks is just too much.”
Meanwhile, the only run of the night came in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Will Coleman, who had singled twice earlier in the game, reached base for the third time on the night with a walk. After Tyler Criscuolo sacrificed him to second, Mike Querfeld laced a double into the gap in rightcenter past the outstretched arms of Milford rightfielder Mike Bevino as Coleman scored easily.
“I was looking fastball and got one a little outside and low,” Querfeld said. “I was just looking for a good pitch to hit.”
With Keinz having thrown 98 pitches in six innings, Balzano elected to bring in Gerald Delise to close it out in the seventh. Delise allowed a two-out single to Kevin Connors and a wild pitch moved pinch runner Adam Antonini to second. However, Delise got Tom Marchitto to pop up to end the game.
Milford had plenty of opportunities to score, especially in the fourth inning when Post 196 had R.J. Jackson on third with one out, but Keinz managed to get a ground ball and a strikeout. Keinz wormed his way out of a second and third situation with none out in the fifth, but got of that as well.
“I just focused,” Keinz said. “I was getting a little rattled out there.”
Milford coach Cliff Bugyi said his team just didn’t get a clutch hit at all as Post 196 left six runners in scoring position.
“We didn’t get a base hit when we needed it,” Bugyi said. “I’m happy with the way we’ve pitched. The bats have to wake up a little bit.”
Milford dropped to 4-4 with the loss and currently sits in sixth place in the 11-team zone.
BRANFORD 1, MILFORD 0
(at Branford HS)
Milford 000 000 0 — 0 3 0
Branford 000 001 X — 1 4 0
Batteries — M: Matt Alicki and Nick Tuozoola. B: Mike Keinz, Gerald Delise (7) and B.J. Massey. 2B — M: Matt Montano and R.J. Jackson. B –Mike Querfeld, RBI — Mike Querfeld.
Records: Milford, 4-4. Branford, 5-0.