One look at the final regular season Tri Valley League baseball standings might lead one to believe that the league was filled with mediocre teams. Norton won the league at 13-5, but Holliston and Medfield tied for eighth place with competitive 7-11 records. Everybody else sat in between. In all, 6 TVL teams qualified for the post-season by sporting records of .500 or better, and that doesn’t include the two consensus league favorites heading into the year, Medfield and Medway.
The high end quality and depth of the league has been on full display in the post-season, as 4 TVL teams remain alive in the state tournament south sectional semifinals. Thanks to a gutty performance by senior captain Chris Burdick and 3 hits from left fielder Zack Sisitsky, ninth-seeded Hopkinton eliminated Falmouth 5-2 in the first Hillers playoff home game since 2012. The 11th-seeded Westwood Wolverines rode senior ace Ben Shields to a 7-0 win over Sandwich. Today, both teams play at Veteran’s Memorial Stadium in Rockland, with the Hillers facing Greater New Bedford Voc Tech at 4, followed by Westwood squaring off against Oliver Ames at 7. Should the Hillers and Wolverines both win, they would play each other for the third time this year, and this one would be for the Division 2 South Sectional crown.
In Division 3, Norton and Dover-Sherborn are both alive and aiming for the title. On Monday, Dover-Sherborn eliminated top seed East Bridgewater 1-0, to earn the chance to play Bourne today. The game is at 4:00 at Franklin High School. On the other side of the Division 3 draw, Norton squares off against Martha’s Vineyard. The Lancers and Islanders will square off at 4:00 today at Stonehill College; these 2 teams have already faced each other twice this season, splitting a pair of one-run games.
It’s also important to note the successes of both Ashland and Bellingham this season. Both had great regular season surges that saw them make the Division 3 playoffs, and both were ultimately eliminated by TVL rival Norton.
Be sure to watch the scoreboard tonight, as hopefully we’ll be looking at a weekend of having 4 TVL teams facing off against each other for South Sectional championships!