Bulldogs win 12 and under bracket in annual Cranberry Brawl
ROCHESTER — The Gifford Park and Dexter Lane baseball fields were alive this weekend as Old Rochester Youth Baseball hosted the 2022 Cranberry Brawl, an annual youth tournament that closes out the baseball season.
This year, about 37 New England teams will compete in the Cranberry Brawl with each competing for the championship, said David Arancio, president of ORYB.
On Sunday, the ORYB Bulldogs took home the trophy for the 10 and under division, winning 10-0 against the Fairhaven-Acushnet team. In the 12 and under division, the Bulldogs did not make it out of the semi-finals, losing 8-2 against the team from Milton. SEYAA won 12-6 against Milton-American.
But on opening night of the tournament, the teams played just for the love of the game.
Charlie Connelly, 13, who plays for the Bulldog’s 12 and under division, has played baseball since he was three years old.
“My favorite part is winning,” he said. “Especially when it’s a close game.”
The ORYB Bulldogs won 12-2 against Sandwich in the the 10 and under division on field five at Gifford Park, while Acushnet-Fairhaven won 22-0 against Scituate on field six.
Meanwhile, at Dexter Lane field, the 12 and under division of the Bulldogs lost to New Bedford’s SEYAA team, 11-1.
Later, the Bulldogs tied 5-5 with Freetown-Lakeville in a game that stretched into the evening.
Next weekend, nine and under teams will compete along with 11 and under teams from July 29 to 31.
While the Bulldogs took to the field against teams from across Massachusetts, parents and volunteers manned concession stands and tables selling Bulldog merchandise — all to raise money for the league.
“[The proceeds] go into our different stabilization funds that we have as an organization that help give back to the fields in Marion, Rochester and Mattapoisett,” said Arancio.
The league has used funds from past tournaments to put two scoreboards in Gifford Park, renovate fields, and purchase equipment for the team.
“I love how everybody gives back,” said Arancio. “This is a very unselfish area and a very unselfish organization. What I love about it is that this builds camaraderie, and this builds up generations-to-come who will keep coming to these fields.”