On the final day of the regular season, the FCIAC baseball playoff picture was simple enough at both ends. A Stamford victory over New Canaan would give the Black Knights the No. 8 seed and complete the field. A Darien road victory over Norwalk would give the Blue Wave the regular-season title and the No. 1 seed.
And as the sun set on a Memorial Day weekend Friday afternoon, that’s just how things seemed to be going. Stamford built a 7-1 lead over New Canaan en route to a 9-1 victory to lock up the eighth seed and its first playoff berth since 2008.
Darien, meanwhile, built an 8-0 lead over Norwalk through two innings.
But things went loco over at City Hall before the Blue Wave could wrap up a 12-9, 11-inning victory.
Norwalk put a 5-run fourth-inning together thanks to a Marco Monterio 3-run home run. And, though Darien looked to be in good shape ahead 9-5 as the game headed to the seventh, it all fell apart for the Blue Wave.
Norwalk scored four runs with two outs to tie the game, first with an error and then with another three-run home run by Mike Gonzalez, who was down to his final strike.
Things settled down after that until the 11th inning. Football all-stater George Reed put the Wave ahead for good with an RBI single to score Jake Frascia, who was 5-for-6 with two triples, a double and three RBIs. Michael O’Malley tacked on some insurance runs with a two-run home run.
Darien set Norwalk down in order to wrap up the game and the top seed. Norwalk fell all the way to No. 4 with the loss.
And so, the FCIAC baseball playoffs look like thus:
FCIAC Baseball Tournament
Quarterfinals, Tuesday, May 26 at higher seeds
No. 8 Stamford at No. 1 Darien
No. 7 Fairfield Warde at No. 2 Staples
No. 6 Trinity Catholic at No. 3 New Canaan
No. 5 Wilton at No. 4 Norwalk
Semifinals, Wednesday, May 27 at Harbor Yard
5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Championship, Friday, May 29 at Harbor Yard
(It all wrapped up with a funny videobomb by former GameTimeCT reporter Pete Paguaga on HanRadio’s video coverage of the game)
— Sean Patrick Bowley (@SPBowley) May 22, 2015