It got a little hairy toward the end, but Iona Prep eked out a 2-1 win over rival Salesian on Sunday to advance in the CHSAA playoffs.
Anthony Piccolino threw six shutout innings, but when the first two batters in the seventh inning reached safely, Gaels coach Ryan Mahoney called on John Mirrione to close out the win. One run scored on an RBI single from Skyler Pichardo, but Mirrione shut the door by inducing a groundout to the pitcher.
Host Iona Prep took an early lead on an RBI double from Chris Dutra in the first inning and an RBI fielder’s choice from Andrew Militie in the second. Piccolino allowed five hits and struck out five in six-plus innings of work.
The Gaels defeated the Eagles in Game 1 of the best-of-three series at home on Friday, but Salesian forced a win-or-go-home game with a 4-1 win in Game 2 on Saturday.
Stepinac also advanced by winning a decisive Game 3 on Sunday. The Crusaders beat St. Raymond’s 9-6 at home, with Jack Ryan pitching four innings for the win and driving in two runs. Richie Rodriguez added two hits and two RBI. He also pitched the final three innings for an extended save and Tim O’Connor homered.
Kennedy had already punched its ticket into the championship tournament, and the Gaels earned the No. 1 seed with a 1-0 win over McClancy on Saturday in nine innings. Max Peterson allowed one hit over seven innings and Matt Mikulski pitched the final two innings. Dan Brady drove in the winning run.
With the final eight teams set for the CHSAA playoffs, the schedule was released on Monday. Here is what’s next in the double-elimination tournament.
No. 7 Fordham Prep vs. No. 2 McClancy at Manhattanville College, 4:30 p.m.
No. 6 Stepinac vs. No. 3 Farrell at Richmond County Youth Complex in Staten Island, 4:30 p.m.
No. 5 Iona Prep vs. No. 4 Xaverian at Fordham University, 4:30 p.m.
No. 8 Molloy vs. No. 1 Kennedy at St. John’s University, 3:30 p.m.