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Haggerty Baseball Claims Stamford Little League Title

STAMFORD, Conn. – Hunter Semmell did a little bit of everything to lift his team to victory in Sunday’s Stamford Tournament of Champions Little League baseball final.

Haggerty Pools of North Stamford Little League capped off a perfect 24-0 season thanks in large part to Semmell’s 4-for-4 performance at the plate with two home runs and 13 strikeouts pitching on the mound. Haggerty’s Pools exploded for 13 hits as it beat Clairol of Springdale Little League , 9-2.

“I couldn’t think of a much better way to end this,” Haggerty manager Gary Purpura said. “We brought up Hunter Semmell, Mike Lisinicchia, Nate Salm and Andy Putterman to this team when they were 10. We had them at 11 and at 12, so it’s pretty special to share it with all those guys.”

Haggerty wasted little time jumping ahead of Clairol in the bottom of the first when catcher Lisinicchia blasted a two-run home run to put his team up 2-0. Semmell, who hit 27 home runs in the regular season, jacked the first of his two home runs to lead off the bottom of the third to give Haggerty all the offense it would need.

The undefeated champs were not done, as Lisinicchia and Nate Salm ripped back-to-back doubles and Haggerty was well on its way to victory.

The 3-4-5 trio of Semmell, Lisinicchia and Salm combined for a monster 9-for-10 evening and accounted for eight of Haggerty's nine runs scored. The three boys also combined to drive in all nine of Haggerty’s runs, collecting three RBI each.

Semmell separated himself with a dominant performance on the mound. The big righty allowed just one hit in 5 1/3 innings before reaching his pitch count limit. He began and ended his outing with a strikeout.

“I never thought I’d come this far when I came to this team when I was 10 years old,” Semmell said. “I just knew I had to come today and pitch like I knew I could.”

Jonas Harper and Tyler Gillman scored Clairol’s two runs. Harper broke up Semmell’s no-hitter in the fifth with an RBI single.

Clairol’s 45-year veteran manager Junie DeLeo had nothing but compliments for his team’s opponent.

“We've got a real good-hitting team, but [Semmell] quieted the whole team,” he said. “This is the best [Clairol] team I've had since 1975, but [Haggerty] deserves the record they have. They’re a real nice group of kids and coaches.”

Many players from Haggerty Pools and Clairol will play for the North Stamford and Springdale All-Star teams, respectively, when district play begins Tuesday.

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