Clarkin, Paoletta lead way to top seed

Matty Clarkin pitched a complete game and Biagio Paoletta drove in six runs when Fairfield American earned the top seed for the New England Little League semifinals with a 9-2 victory over Wellesley South, Massachusetts at Breen Field in Bristol on Wednesday.

Coach Bill Meury’s 4-0 club will meet South Burlington, Vermont, the fourth seed, in the second game at 1 p.m. on Thursday.

Wellesley (2-2) will play Bedford (2-2), New Hampshire in the first semifinal at 10 a.m.


Paoletta hit a triple to the bases of the fence in right field to score Michael Ghiorzi, Clarkin and Ryan Meury, who had all walked in the bottom of the second inning to stake Fairfield to a 3-0 lead.


Wellesley’s Kaeden Bentley hit a solo home run in the top of the fourth.

Chris Meyers led off the home fourth with a first-pitch home run to dead center.

Fairfield struck for two more runs in the frame with Paoletta (ground out) and Will Lucas (single) accounting for the RBIs.

Dan Kiernan led off the fifth with a double and scored on Ryan Meury’s single.

Paoletta’s two-run single scored Clarkin (walk) and Ryan Meury.

The left-handed Clarkin used his curveball to get ahead in the count and he enticed 10 ground-ball outs, including an inning-ending double play started by Ghiorzi and turned by Lucas to Matt Kubel in the second.

Clarkin used 82 pitches, as he struck out five, didn’t walk a batter, and allowed five hits.

Wellesley scored an unearned run in the sixth.

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