We love Shelton Little League

We really, really, really love Marcello Ursini, son of Office Manager, extraordinaire, Tammy Ursini. (That woman needs an agent).

We have known Marcello since...forever! Go Marcello and go Shelton Little League!!!

Your fans at Haskins Laboratories


Shelton Connecticut's Marcello Ursini rounds ...
AP - Saturday, August 16 11:32 pm

Shelton Connecticut's Marcello Ursini rounds third after hitting a fourth-inning solo-home run off Rapid City, S.D. pitcher Cale Fierro in a baseball game during pool play at the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pa., Saturday, Aug. 16, 2008. New England won 9-4. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)


Connecticut's Marcelo Ursini, right, is greeted by New Hampshire Nick Makris, left, after Marcelo hitting the winning home run for his team during the New England Regional Championship baseball game in Bristol, Conn., Saturday, Aug. 9, 2008. At left is Connecticut coach Mark Berritto. Connecticut won 2-1. Shelton's National Little League team won a spot Saturday in the Little League World Series, the first Connecticut team to reach that milestone in almost 20 years.



Ursini's home runs power Shelton National

BRISTOL — The line drive kept flying toward that yellow line in the distance in left field. Above it: victory for Shelton National Little League. Below it: keep running.

Marcelo Ursini kept running, just in case. As became the norm for him at the New England Regional, he didn't have to.

Even as it dipped, the ball cleared the yellow line — the plastic rim atop the chain-link outfield fence — and fell into the crowd at the Giamatti Center.

Ursini's line-drive home run with two outs in the top of the sixth gave Shelton National a 2-1 lead over Manchester (N.H.) North. Bobby Moretti and Eddie Kochiss combined to get three outs in the bottom of the sixth, and Shelton National was off to the Little League World Series.

Tyler Tice had tied the game with a one-out home run, a majestic shot to left field that broke up Carmen Giampetruzzi's shutout and restored Shelton National's life.

Ursini's, on an 0-1 curveball? He wasn't sure at first it was going to go.

"I saw the ball go, but I wasn't watching when it went over," said Ursini, a first baseman and outfielder. "It was incredible. I didn't know what to do."

You'd think he might be used to it by now. While the trip to Williamsport, Pa., will be once-in-a-lifetime for the dozen 12-year-olds, hitting a home run at this tournament became an everyday thing for Ursini.

Shelton National played six games at the Giamatti Center, and Ursini homered in each of the last four. Batting cleanup in
a powerful lineup, Ursini was usually involved in Shelton's offensive outbursts.

"He's a person to back me up, to make sure they don't pitch around me," said Bobby Moretti, the ace pitcher and third hitter, who earned the win Saturday.

Ursini had hit home runs in back-to-back games before, but he couldn't remember anything like hitting home runs in four in a row.

He began the streak Monday with a two-run home run in the third inning against Cranston, R.I. That gave Shelton National the 4-0 lead that held up as the final score.

In an 8-0 win over West Roxbury, Mass., on Wednesday, Ursini opened the scoring with a two-run home run. Thursday, he capped a 12-0 win over Williston, Vt., with a solo homer.

Moretti said he's used to seeing Ursini produce like that.

"Hard work pays off," Moretti said. "We practice almost every day."

Over the six-game tournament, Ursini was 5-for-12 with seven RBIs. He also scored seven runs.

His last hit of the tournament might be the biggest blow for a Connecticut Little League team in 19 years, since Trumbull National won the World Series in 1989.

"I knew it gave us the lead," Tice said, "and that our pitchers would shut them down."

After a couple of hits, they did, and Shelton National plays its first game at the World Series on Friday night at 6 (ESPN2).



Go Shelton!