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Titans win boys' baseball league championship

By Larry Moko

A spectacular catch by second baseman Taio Fotiou helped secure a Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic high school baseball championship for the Bishop Tonnos Titans.

“Taio saved the game for us,” Tonnos coach Richard Sayej told onlookers Friday as he individually introduced his players during post-game medal presentations.

Fotiou’s headlong diving grab of an infield pop up stranded two base runners in the sixth inning as the Titans held on for a 6-4 victory over the St. Thomas More Knights at Mohawk Sports Park.

The Knights had already plated two runs in the sixth on an RBI single by Declan Elwood and a bases-loaded fielder’s choice by Flynn Patterson. That’s when Connor Olmstead’s innocent-looking infield fly almost kept the ball rolling for More.

“Our shortstop lost it in the sun,” Sayej said. “Taio just came across and dove. He made a great play. That’s usually the shortstop’s ball.

“It was a clutch third out to save the game in my opinion.”

Fotiou, who also plays rep ball for the Ancaster 18U squad, described his defensive gem as follows: “I heard my teammate say ‘I can’t see it’. So I just tried to run for the ball. I laid out and got it in my glove.”

Just above the ground.

“The runners were taking off,” Fotiou added. “If the ball did drop it would have scored two more runs and tied the game.”

Tonnos and the defending champions from More came into the league final with overall records of 5-1.

Tonnos scored twice each in the first, third and fourth innings, while More replied with its first two runs in the third inning.

Said Sayej: “We got a two-run lead early which helped calm our nerves down.”

More tied the score at 2-2 when Patterson and Stephen Morelli each singled and raced home on a double by Hudson Poole.

In its half of the third, Jack Hines and Anthony Ricci reached base with singles before crossing the plate when Pavao and Julian Sabourin both stroked doubles.

In the fifth, Dylan Sayej walked, stole second and crossed the plate on a ground single to left field by Smith, the winning pitcher. Hines then belted a long triple to score Smith.

Smith started the game on the mound and was relieved for the final two innings by Pavao. The Titans out-hit the Knights, 8-6.

Sayej said the Tonnos pitching duo was effective and the team hit well as it has done all season. He also praised the steadying influence of Hines, who handled the catching duties and reached base all four times with two walks, a single and a triple. Hines also gathered in a relay throw to tag a runner out at home.

The Knights lost 10-2 to the Titans in their lone meeting of the regular schedule. “We improved over our first game against them but not enough,” More coach Sett Silvestri said. “Full credit to BT. They hit the ball today and that was an outstanding infield catch that saved a couple of runs.

“I’m very proud of our guys.”

In earlier semifinal playoff action, Tonnos edged the Bishop Ryan Celtics, 12-11, and Tonnos topped the St. Mary Crusaders, 13-4.

“Eight of our Grade 12s are leaving,” Sayej said, “but we’ve got some good kids in the pipeline that will continue the tradition of Bishop Tonnos baseball.”

Other members of the Titans are Evander D’Andrea, Adam Assadi, Declan Shannon, George Aitas, Wil Youngberg, Jack Barr, Ronan D’Andrea, Caden Draho, Jack Hudder, John Raposo and Peyton Shannon.






Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham