By MICHAEL LETENDRE
MIDDLETOWN – When St. Paul Catholic baseball standout Mike Dombrowski dropped in a sacrifice fly during the Falcons’ Class S championship game against Morgan on Sunday, June 12, that go ahead run – plus another one scored off an error – propelled the squad to the title in a 4-2 win over the Huskies.
Senior pitcher Connor Crean yielded just three hits and struck out 13 in the complete game effort victory for St. Paul Catholic.
The victory was the school’s third baseball championship in five tries overall.
Those other four championship bouts came during the 1970’s and involved a couple individuals fans have seen at games this past season.
With that in mind, let’s look all four of the Falcons previous title games:
State Championship Game 1: St. Paul vs. Valley Regional, Class B Final
Date: June 12, 1971
Result: The Falcons won the contest by a 3-1 final
Highlights – Jim Dumont broke a 1-1 tie with a two-RBI smash in the sixth inning as the Falcons won its first championship tilt. St. Paul managed five hits in the game, highlighted by the hit from Dumont while Tom Lowery went 2-for-2 and notched two runs on the day. Pitcher Jim Garney won the contest for St. Paul, moving to 13-1 on the year. George Synnott’s Falcons went 17-4 overall on the season.
State Championship Game 2: St. Paul vs. Gilbert (Winsted), Class B Final
Date: June 10, 1972
Result: St Paul won its second consecutive Class B championship, defeating Gilbert 4-3
Highlights – Again, in the sixth inning, veteran Cary Dupont and freshman Frank Owsianko hooked up to score the game winning run. With Dupont at second, Owsianko sent an RBI single to left to propel the Falcons to another title. Dupont and Owsianko combined for two of the squad’s five total hits along with two RBI. Jim Garney earned the victory and won eight games that season for the Bristol outfit. St. Paul finished the year at 13-7.
State Championship Game 3: St. Paul vs. Gilbert (Windsted), Class B Final
Date: June 9, 1973
Result: In its third consecutive Class B championship game, St. Paul fell to Gilbert by a 6-3 push in Torrington
Highlights – Gilbert was limited to just four hits in the game but three St. Paul errors didn’t help matters. The squad notched five runs in the bottom of the fourth and never gave St. Paul a chance in the tournament tilt. Jim Deschaine drew the loss for the Falcons in relief. Deschaine smashed out two of the team’s five total hits. The loss ended a then state record 13 straight state tournament victories and a chance at being the first team in the state with three baseball championships, to that point. The Falcons ended the excellent season at 15-6.
State Championship Game 4: St. Paul vs. Gilbert (Winsted), Class B Final
Date: June 12, 1976
Result: In the rubber match in the Class B championship series, Gilbert defeated the Falcons 6-1 Highlights – Gilbert, ranked No. 9, defeated No. 23 St. Paul – in the nine inning format – braking a 1-1 stalemate in the top of the eighth with a four run explosion to capture the Class B title. The Falcons were limited to three total hits while Gilbert notched 10 overall. Dave Carter drew the loss for St. Paul but pitched well. Dick Halleck, Tom Reynolds and Jody Dupont each had a hit in the losing effort. The Falcons ended the campaign at 13-10.