Waterford Babe Ruth 15s roll through District 6 tournament

Waterford - At no point in this tournament was the sixth inning required in any Waterford game.

That's right. Five wins, five by the 10-run rule.

And the District 6 Babe Ruth 15-year-old baseball title.

Waterford pitcher Steve Gerovitz pitched a five-inning no-hitter in Thursday's championship game at the Waterford Babe Ruth Field, a 10-0 victory over East Lyme.

Waterford and East Lyme both advance to the state tournament that begins July 18 at the Waterford Babe Ruth Field.

"These kids have been hitting the ball since they were 13," Waterford manager Dave Laffey said. "They played very well in this tournament. I don't know that they've lost a district game since they started to play Babe Ruth."

Gerovitz struck out five and walked three.

"It's the first time he pitched in a week and a half," Laffey said. "He was having some arm problems. He told me he was good to go and I said 'you're the guy.'"

Waterford's offense supported Gerovitz with 16 hits, including six straight during a four-run third inning.

Waterford led 1-0 after an inning on Chase Speller's sacrifice fly and 3-0 after two thanks to Tyler Yeomans' RBI single and a bases-loaded walk to Cory Conderino.

In the third, Speller, Justin Keating, Alex Petchark, Ben Pickowitz, Gerovitz and Yeomans delivered successive hits that eventually made it 7-0.

Speller (RBI double) and Petchark (RBI single) made it 9-0 in the fourth. Shortstop Mike Rocchetti, who made a running catch in short left field to preserve the no-hitter in the top of the fifth, ended the game with an RBI single.

Yeomans had three hits while Speller, Petchark, Pickowitz and Gerovitz had two apiece.

The same group of Waterford players won the District 6 and state championship in 14-year-old Babe Ruth last season, advancing as far as the New England regional title game.

Laffey said he's not worried about suddenly experiencing a close game in the state tournament after the 10-run rule wins here.

"I'm pretty sure they can handle it," he said. "These kids went to finals in New England last year. They've been in tight games before."

m.dimauro@theday.com

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