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Nigeria’s President Suspends National Soccer Team From Competition For Two Years

Nigeria's national soccer team. (AP photo)
Here's the biggest difference between soccer in the rest of the world and the United States. The president of Nigeria today suspended the national team for two years because of its poor showing in the World Cup. A spokesman for president Goodluck Jonathan said it will give the nation a chance to reorganize the national team.

Nigeria was eliminated after group play in the World Cup with just one point. They lost to Argentina in Group B's first game, 1-0, lost to Greece 2-1 in the second game and tied South Korea 1-1 in the finale. The team hasn't won a World Cup game since 1998.

The Nigerian Football Federation's executive committee had already apologized to the government and "all football loving Nigerians" for being eliminated early. But the bigger question here is that the Nigeria can be banned by FIFA from all international soccer because of political interference. "At the time of writing, we have no official information on this matter," FIFA said in a statement. "However, in general, FIFA's position regarding political interference in football is well known."

As you can read, things are a whole lot different here from the rest of the world. When all you hear is that America should be proud of the United States soccer team for their showing in the World Cup, it should make you sick. Want to succeed in soccer? Try consequences and not sugar-coating the truth. Nigeria's team shouldn't be banned from competition, and the government involvement is just plain wrong, but is that any different than US soccer doing the exact opposite? The propaganda to make us believe US soccer wasn't embarrassed in getting eliminated by a team they should have beat is just as wrong as the Nigerian government.

Outright Disgraceful Performance For US Soccer Team In Embarrassing Loss To Ghana, Eliminated From Cup

Where do I start? Well, I actually know exactly where to start. With the final seconds ticking away in the United States' 2-1 loss to Ghana, the two announcers on ABC started with the usual mantra that America has a lot to be proud of. I'm sure a lot of other people in the media and fans will say the same thing. But guess what? Those people are all idiots.

Proud? How about disgraceful. How about pathetic. How about embarrassing.

This isn't a youth league team. This isn't little league. This is the real world where teams are held accountable for their failures. And the United States failed big-time today. If US soccer wants us to become fans and stay fans then they can't insult us. Call it what it is ... a choke job. Come out and say this was a horrible performance and we'll hopefully try and recover for the next tournament and, in four years, the next World Cup. Do not tell me that I have to be proud of a group of players that lost to a team they should have beaten.

This is sports. I'm embarrassed about that display and so should everyone else involved. I want players, coaches and fans to say that. I want these soccer "experts" to say that. But I'll play that part for now.

Coach Bob Bradley had a horrible final game. His lineups changes were a disaster. His start of Ricardo Clark cost the team the first goal, as his giveaway at midfield soon had Ghana up 1-0. By the way, when does the early goals the US allows seemingly every game come back on the coach? Sure it's the players fault, but the coach needs to be held accountable for having his team ready to play from the first whistle. The same thing happened in the opening moments of extra time too. Unacceptable. The US needs to bring in a coach from Europe. Bradley should have coached his last game today.

The defense? Horrible. The forwards? Invisible. Jozy Altidore had nothing. Save for the first 20 minutes of the second half, the United States looked like it didn't want to be on the field. The first half was dominated by Ghana. The early minutes of the second half was dominated by the Americans and they got the goal from Landon Donovan on the penalty kick to tie it. But then the US went in the tank and played for the tie, I guess hoping to end the game with penalty kicks and hope goalie Tim Howard makes a save or two. That, again, was a horrible decision. A decision that has them going home right now.

I would start over completely on defense. That group was simply terrible today. The US needs to find a real striker too, not this Altidore poser.

By the way, I also heard "tired legs" thrown out there by commentators. Just to let everyone in on the secret, Ghana's legs were just as tired. The old adage holds true here, Ghana just wanted it more.

Proud? I don't think so.

I will say this to all of those casual soccer fans out there ... keep watching. There are some truly great teams still left in this World Cup. Enjoy soccer by watching Brazil, Spain, England, Germany, Argentina and more. Those teams are what soccer is all about. And the best part is if they lose, they will tell you how embarrassed they are. That's what a sport is all about.

(AP photo)

United States Soccer Takes On Ghana In Latest Biggest Game In Our History

The World Cup bracket could not have shaken out better for the United States than it has over the past few days. After Landon Donovan's dramatic, stoppage time goal against Algeria that sent the Americans to the Round of 16, the US has a great draw ahead of itself over the next two games.

First, Ghana is today at 2:30 p.m., an opponent the Americans should beat. It won't be easy, as Ghana will have the home field advantage as the only African nation left in the tourney, but with all the momentum in the world, this is the Americans game to lose. The fact alone the first opponent in knockouts is Ghana is another big break for the US. If England had scored two goals in its win over Slovenia, the US would be big underdogs against Germany. Ghana? Germany? It's pretty simple which country you'd rather face.

Now, if the United States does defeat Ghana, the next opponent would be Uruguay, which just defeated South Korea 2-1 Saturday. Uruguay is very beatable and the United States matches up well against a team that wasn't impressive on the pitch today. Still, Uruguay did score two goals, the last of which was a spectacular wonder goal by Luis Suarez. Solid defense is its strong suit, but the Americans can penetrate that unit and score. As a side, if England did score those two goals, the US would most likely have to play Argentina to advance to the Final Four. Uruguay? Argentina? Well, you get the idea.

At the start of the tournament I had the US in the semifinals and I see no reason for that to change. The US defeats Ghana in another dramatic game, 2-1.

My bracket on ESPN, by the way, is better than 92.5 percent of the world. Not bad ... but still not a leaderboard-type score. My final four is the US, Brazil, England and Spain. From there I have England beating Brazil in the championship. The England pick isn't looking so good now, but the knockout stage is a whole new tournament where things can change in a heartbeat.

But first things first. We're about two hours away from the latest in the string of biggest games in the history of United States soccer. How big is this game? I got that Yankees playoff game, Jets football Sunday type anticipation running through my body. This is big.

(AP photo)

Wonder Goal By Donovan In Stoppage Time Sends United States Soccer Team To The Round Of 16

I was three minutes away from typing that the game of soccer is just too big for the United States. For 90 minutes, the Americans missed golden scoring chance after golden scoring chance to be knotted with Algeria 0-0 in the final match of group play Wednesday morning. With England leading 1-0, the US was just three minutes away from going home in what would have been yet another disastrous finish. But then came a play that will never be forgotten.

Goaltender Tim Howard made a save on a header by Algeria and tossed the ball long to Landon Donovan. He got the ball to Jozy Altidore. The young striker then worked his way into the box and crossed to Clint Dempsey. But the Algerian goaltender, Rais Bolihi, who had come up big all day, stopped the shot cold. There was a rebound, however, and it came out to the six-yard box. Landon Donovan, the American star who many have questioned his true talent, rushed to the ball and shot it into the open net to give the United States a 1-0 shocking victory in South Africa.

From sheer agony to pure ecstasy, the United States is not only through to the Round of 16, but wins the group for the first time since 1930. There is more soccer to be played for the Americans, who again had to overcome a horrible referee call, an offsides that disallowed a US goal. But this time around, that would have been no excuse. The US missed at least two open nets as it looked like the game was sure to be headed for a scoreless draw.

Algeria, which needed a big victory as well to have any chance of advancing, was inexplicably playing for the draw. If I didn't know any better I would say they were in, with FIFA and the refs, on the plot to knock out the United States. Nobody outside of this country wants the US to win the World Cup, let alone advance to Round 16. But good luck calling off that final Donovan goal.

Now, the United States could have the upper hand in advancing to the Elite Eight, as Ghana is a possible opponent for the Americans next Saturday afternoon. But Germany, Australia and Serbia could all get to that spot as well. The US will play the second place team in Group D, which will be determined today starting at 2:30 p.m.

The United States is starting to believe, and after that wonder goal by Donovan, you have to believe they have turned the page on the past and could very well make a run in this World Cup. The stars have aligned, we'll see how far the United States can take this now.

(AP photos)

Afternoon GameDay Is Back With A Special Second Anniversary Edition

We have a brand-new design here at GameDay as we celebrate our second anniversary. I actually had to go back in time because I couldn't remember how long I've actually been doing this, but after some research, two years this month it is. It actually feels a lot longer because the blog has taken a life of its own. Anyone I meet in the newspaper or sports business nowadays always says Brad Carroll's GameDay to me, acknowledging in almost code-like fashion that they follow along with my ramblings. So, quickly, thanks to everyone for making GameDay a regular stop on your internet surfing adventure. To those that are new, welcome aboard.

Today, to honor the past, I'm going to bring back Afternoon GameDay, which is 10 quick take thoughts on the world of sports. So, with a nod to the past and a push to the future, here we go.

*There was a whole lot of talk early in the baseball season that the Yankees had made a horrible trade in acquiring Javier Vazquez, with GameDay leading that charge. Several weeks later and Vazquez has settled in and become a trusted option in the rotation. The same can not be said for A.J. Burnett. The No. 2 starter was humiliated by the pathetic Diamondbacks last night, allowing seven runs in four innings. In June he has allowed 23 runs in 20 innings. Overall he is 6-6 with a 4.83 ERA and a very high 1.46 WHIP. Those numbers are simply horrible and the time may come soon for the Yankees to make a decision on the immediate future of Burnett. Does that mean a skipped start or a trip to the disabled list? I'm not sure, but obviously something has to be done. With Burnett on the mound for the Yankees it's as close to a guaranteed loss as it comes. That can not be tolerated. There's still a lot of time to turn things around, but this Burnett could end up costing the Yankees a playoff berth.

*The reason why the Burnett struggles haven't killed the Yankees yet this season is because Andy Pettitte and Phil Hughes have been fantastic. In fact, I say Pettitte should start for the American League in the All-Star game. Hughes should get a spot on the team as well. That could make four Yankees pitchers on the All-Star team, with Mariano Rivera and CC Sabathia as the other two that couldn't be argued.

*I have LeBron James and Chris Bosh both going to the Knicks. Is that wishful thinking? Probably.

*The Red Sox return to Colorado starting tonight for the first time since winning the 2007 World Series. The Rockies, as the Cardinals did in 2004, put up no fight in weakly going down and handing the Red Sox a championship. I know Boston fans have every right to celebrate those championships, but was there ever a doubt? Those two NL entries were embarrassing.

*The Yankees, meanwhile, are in Arizona, the site of the most disappointing and heartbreaking World Series loss in recent Yankees history. We all remember the end, so I'm not even going to go there. To this day, I still despise the Diamondbacks, even if they've become a joke. (But with a pool in the outfield, they've been pretty much a joke since they came into the league.)

*Keeping with the joke theme, how about the France national soccer team? After losing to South Africa today the cheating French go home without a victory in the World Cup. Again, thanks FIFA for keeping Ireland at home in favor of that pathetic group of players and coaches. It's just really sad that a nation was kept on the outside because FIFA wanted the larger nation in the tournament and went to great lengths to make that happen.

*With Ireland out, my support has been behind the United States, and tomorrow will be a huge moment in the history of American soccer. If the US wins, they are in to the Round of 16. Algeria is beatable, but we all said the same thing about Slovenia, and they scored two first-half goals against the US. So, anything can happen. You have to believe the US will win the game, but history says something different. The Americans have to change perception and put a stamp on the World Cup with a big victory ... 2-0 or 3-0.

*Need a reason to root for the US? How about the rest of the world and FIFA doesn't want the United States to win? Is there any more reason to root for America than that? Let's crash the party.

*I forgot what a wasteland television is during the summer. But Big Brother and Entourage are coming back soon, so I guess I got that to look forward to. I'll tell you, though, Entourage better pick it up because last season was terrible.

*Finally, behind all the people who work for the Big 12, the happiest group that college football realignment didn't go as many had planned is EA Sports. If wide-spread realignment had happened, who would want to purchase the next installment of its NCAA Football game? Not me. I enjoy playing college football more than Madden, so if I wouldn't want to touch what would feel like an undated game, that can't be a good sign. I would have just stuck with last year's game and waited for the next game that features complete realignment. Alas, with only Colorado and Nebraska leaving the Big 12, the shock waves are just minor blips. So, EA probably breathed a sigh of relief along with the Big 12.

Alright, that's my 10 topics. Check back tomorrow for GameDay's take on the United States' soccer showdown with Algeria.

(AP photos)

'Grand Theft Soccer' Back Page

For those that don't get to see the paper at all, or often, here is the back page from Saturday's United States-Slovenia game that included the horrific referee decision that cost the Americans the victory.

It seems like everyone loves the headline, so here it is in full effect.

With England's Shocking Draw With Algeria, US Soccer Controls Destiny

Since England decided to make the entire group blow up by not scoring against Algeria, in a 0-0 draw, the United States now has a tremendous opportunity to advance to the Round of 16. Here are the scenarios for that to happen.

1. The United States moves on with a win over Algeria on Wednesday morning. That would give the US five points, which is guaranteed to be more points than England or Slovenia can put together. England and Slovenia play each other at the same time at a different venue on Wednesday.

2. If the US draws with Algeria, which would give them three points, England must lose to Slovenia OR have England and Slovenia end in a draw AND the US maintains its goals scored advantage over England (right now it's 3-1 for the US).

3. Finally, there is one scenario that would lead to lots being drawn for who advances. If the US draws with Algeria and England draws with Slovenia, but England scores two more goals than the US does against Algeria, both teams would be even on all tiebreakers for second place.

(AP photo)

United States Soccer Screwed Vs. Slovenia, But Can It Advance?

Many questions after the United States draw with Slovenia this morning, but I'll answer them all right now.

First, Did the referees screw the Americans over? Absolutely. It was an embarrassment how poorly the officials were the entire game, and not just on the final disallowed goal. They were horrible throughout. On the final no-goal, there was no foul on the United States. In fact, at least two Americans were fouled by Slovenian defenders in the box. Just embarrassing. We all know how terrible officials can change the course of history ... I think we all remember what the crooked FIFA refs did to keep Ireland out of the World Cup and get the country they wanted - France - into the Cup. This, is just more anti-American sentiment. The head official, Koman Coulibaly, should be fired immediately, that's how bad he was. Here's what Landon Donovan said on ESPN following the game about the disallowed goal and the referees. "I don't know how they stole that goal from us. I'm not sure what the call was, he wouldn't tell us. It was the guy's first World Cup game so maybe the moment got to him. But you can't take away a good ball like that."

Second, Is the draw something to be proud of? Absolutely not. Do you think the Americans are in the locker room celebrating right now? Of course not. So, nobody else should either. This was a horrible draw for the favored Americans. The US should have won this game.

Third, Who to root for in the England-Algeria match? Root for Algeria and hope for a miracle. Algeria has little to no shot at winning the game, though, so a draw might be the only realistic hope for US fans. If England some how draws, the US will have a great shot to advance. If England wins, the going gets real tough from there.

Fourth, What is the most likely outcome heading into the final matches? Slovenia and England (after a victory over Algeria later on) will have four points, with the Americans standing at two. Luckily, the US plays Algeria next, so count that as a win. That gives the US five points. Slovenia and England would play at the same time. If England wins, that would give them seven points. If Slovenia wins, that would also give them seven points. The losing team would stay at four points, meaning the US would advance. If England and Slovenia draw, that would give the top three teams five points each. Then it would come down to goal differential. Considering England will probably beat Algeria by at least two goals, it will go through, leaving Slovenia and the US standing alone for the final spot. Because Slovenia has allowed less goals than the US so far (3-2), the US will most likely have to overcome the goal differential lead Slovenia holds and beat it by one. So, that means the US will have to beat Algeria 2-0. Get all of that? I hope so. We'll know more after the England-Algeria match which starts at 2:30 p.m.

Fifth, What will happen? Looking into GameDay's crystal ball, England wins today and ties Slovenia, putting all the pressure on the US. The Americans, for once, come through and beat Algeria 2-0. That puts England in the top spot and the US in the second. Slovenia is the odd team out of a three-way tie.

(AP photos)

GameDay Live: United States Soccer

GameDay Live: Championship Saturday, High School Softball

Terryville made history on Championship Saturday, winning the Class S State Championship in softball for the school's first ever title in that sport. Pitcher Beth Grimes tossed a one-hit shutout for the Kangaroos. Bristol Eastern nearly pulled off what would have been a tremendous comeback, but ended up just short in a 3-2 loss to Waterford in the Class L State Championship. Extended details below in GAMEDAY LIVE.

Class L State Championship
No. 1 Waterford 3, No. 6 Bristol Eastern 2
Waterford 002 010 0 - 3
Eastern 000 001 1 - 2
NOTES: Michaud comes through with an RBI single to cut the lead to 3-2, but the Eastern runner is thrown out going to third base to end the game. Tough ending to what was an exciting finish. Top-ranked Waterford wins the Class L State Championship, 3-2.
Starting Pitchers: BE, Alyssa Boutin. W, Erin Miller.

NEWS: United States 1, England 1, Final.

Class S State Championship
No. 1 Terryville 2, No. 6 St. Bernard 0
St. Bernard 000 000 0 - 0
Terryville 000 020 x - 2
TERRYVILLE WINS STATE CHAMPIONSHIP. Beth Grimes pitches a one-hit shutout to lead Terryville to the first softball state championship in school history, 2-0. Terryville scored both runs in the fifth inning, as Jaime Bridge, on third after a wild pitch, scored on a single through the right side by Anna Dupaul for the game-winning run. Brittany Stancavage added an RBI ground out later in the inning for the 2-0 lead.
Starting Pitchers: T, Beth Grimes. SB, Alexa Gospondinoff.

Class M State Championship: No. 7 St. Joseph 3, No. 8 Lauralton Hall 2

GameDay Live: Knights Vs. Staples

We have you covered for the CIAC Class L State Championship boys volleyball game tonight between No. 1 Staples and No. 2 Southington at Conard High School, with live updates throughout the match. So, check back here for the latest info.

Boys Volleyball
Class L State Championship
No. 2 Southington 3, No. 1 Staples 2 (sets)
Set Five: 15-11, Southington
Set Four: 25-19, Staples
Set Three: 25-23, Southington
Set Two: 28-26, Southington
Set One: 25-10, Staples
NOTES: Southington wins state championship! Full coverage in the pages of The Bristol Press and New Britain Herald Saturday.

First Red Cards Goes To Uruguay's Lodeiro At World Cup

We have our first red card of the tournament and it looks like it was well deserved.

Uruguay's Nicolas Lodeiro was just sent off in the 80th minute for a hard slide tackle that could have taken out the France player's knee. Uruguay and France are still scoreless with about 10 minutes to play.

Henry On Bench For France

Thierry Henry is on the bench for France in the World Cup opener against Uruguay, which is about to kick off right now.

HALFTIME UPDATE: Well, that wasn't the most exciting first half of soccer, but we got another half to go, so hopefully the game picks up in action. France and Uruguay are scoreless through the first 45 minutes.

South Africa Gets Draw With Mexico

And there is the final whistle: South Africa 1, Mexico 1. Before the game, if you told the South Africans they would end the game with a draw, they would be thrilled. But with how the game unfolded, they have to be bitterly disappointed. RSA allowed a terrible goal in the second half to Mexico to tie the game. Then, at the end of the game, South Africa hit the post on an open shot, which will be a tough thing to let go.

So close for South Africa, but it does get the draw. Uruguay and the cheating French are next at 2:30 p.m. Can you guess who I'll be rooting for?

(AP photo)

World Cup Running Blog: Are You Kidding? Off The Post

Oh my god! South Africa hits the post in the final minute. Wow. And another chance by South Africa. Mexico on its heels. Three minutes of extra time.

More Reason To Root Against France

Just read this, Pizza Hut in Ireland is offering free pizza for every goal scored against the cheating French in today's game against Uruguay. Just another reason to root against the cheats.

Three-plus minutes to go in the South Africa-Mexico game.

Everyone Should Be Watching

With the World Cup kicking off just seconds ago I don't think there is any question, for me at least, that this tournament is the greatest in the world. Yes, better than the NCAA basketball's March Madness. I know America still hasn't embraced the sport, but on this international stage, I don't understand how that is possible. Every US citizen has to have some type of connection with a foreign country, with a good chance one of those would be in the World Cup.

Even with no affiliation, which I find himself in with Ireland getting screwed of a spot in the tourney, can find the rooting interest on the side of the United States. This soccer tournament is all about national pride - and why the heck wouldn't you support that? If you don't have a country to root for, get behind the Americans. If you want to root against a country, there is none better than the cheating French, who play later today. Either way, just watch the games and get caught up in the incredible atmosphere of World Cup soccer. You just might become a fan for life.

(AP photo)

Patriots Sign Aaron Hernandez

Bristol native Aaron Hernandez and the New England Patriots agreed on a contract Tuesday. Terms were not disclosed. Hernandez, a rookie tight end, is the fourth of 12 draft picks to sign with the Patriots. Hernandez dropped to the fourth round of the NFL Draft mainly because of character concerns and at least one failed drug test while at the University of Florida, which Hernandez acknowledged. He has denied being a multiple offender, however, as published reports suggested.

Without those concerns, Hernandez could have been a first- or second-round draft pick, which would have brought in possibly millions more in total salary, as opposed to the money slotted for a fourth round selection. We'll have more on this story as it develops.

GameDay Live: CIAC State Tournament Semifinals

We're back with the biggest games of the entire CIAC playoff tournament schedule - the semifinals. Check back all day and night long for live updates from games all around the state. And, as always, feel free to comment with questions and thoughts about your favorite teams.

BREAKING NEWS: Patriots sign Bristol native Aaron Hernandez.

Class S State Tournament
No. 1 Terryville 2, No. 4 Coginchaug 0
Terryville 000 020 0 - 2
Coginchaug 000 000 0 - 0

NOTES: Beth Grimes gets Julia Giancola on strikes to end the game and send Terryville to the Class S State Championship game. The Kangaroos will play No. 6 St. Bernard. The game's big hit comes from Taryn Vigeant in the fifth inning, with a two-run single to break the scoreless tie. No. 6 St. Bernard (19-5) beat No. 7 Somers to advance to the Class S title game.

Starting Pitchers: T, Beth Grimes. C, Marielle Handley.

Class LL State Tournament
No. 8 Xavier 3, No. 4 Bristol Central 1
Xavier 300 000 0 - 3
Central 100 000 0 - 1

NOTES: All the scoring occurred in the first inning. Central is eliminated one game short of the Class LL State Championship.

Class L State Tournament
No. 2 Southington 3, No. 3 Xavier 1 (sets)
Set Four: 25-20, Southington
Set Three: 25-17, Southington
Set Two: 25-22, Xavier
Set One: 25-10, Southington

NOTES: Southington wins 25-20 to clinch the match. The Blue Knights advance to the Class L Championship game Friday night.

Class LL State Tournament
No. 2 Westhill 3, No. 3 Southington 2
Southington 200 000 0 - 2
Westhill 001 200 x - 3

NOTES: Southington goes down 1-2-3 to end the game and its season with a 3-2 loss to Westhill in the Class LL semifinals. The Blue Knights' two runs were drive in by Val Mazrek, who hit a two-run home run in the first inning.

Conan O'Brien Thrills Crowd At Mohegan, With GameDay In Front

For those that follow GameDay on Twitter know that I made it out to Mohegan Sun last night for the Conan O'Brien live comedy show at the arena. Going in, my expectations were through the roof, and we all know what happens when that kind of pressure is put on an event. But in this case, the show actually exceeded my expectations. It was that good.

It didn't hurt that I had front row seats thanks to the guys at the Mohegan Sun Player's Club. You can see from the above photos how close I was to the stage, and considering they are camera phone shots, they probably don't do it complete justice.

New Britain's David Reed Already Making A Name For Himself With Baltimore Ravens

It looks like Ravens WR and New Britain native David Reed is already making a name for himself in Baltimore. Reed had a standout rookie minicamp and coach John Harbaugh was raving about the first-year wide-out.

"I thought he caught everything today that I noticed. He made some radius catches, you know, low catches, high catches, behind-the-back type stuff. The thing that David's got to do, like any of these young guys, is learn the mental part of it, learn where he's supposed to be, how he's supposed to line up, the tempo of the motions, how far he goes in a motion on different routes. I mean, there's a lot to it, so that he can actually think less and play faster. And that's the process all these guys go through, so that's kind of what we're working through now, and I think he's a good example of yesterday to today, he made tremendous progress with that."

Reed was drafted in the fifth round out of Utah.

(AP photo)

GameDay Live: Baseball & Softball State Tournament Day 2

We're back on Day 2 of the CIAC postseason tournaments in both baseball and softball with live updates from the biggest games of the day. We'll be updating live throughout the afternoon and into the evening, so follow us all day long and feel free to comment with your questions and thoughts about the tournament and your favorite teams.

Class L State Tournament
First Round
No. 20 Bristol Eastern 2, No. 13 Berlin 1 (8)
Eastern 001 000 01 - 2
Berlin 000 100 00 - 1

Notes: Todd Anderson comes through with an RBI single for Bristol Eastern in the top of the eighth, scoring an unearned run, that turns out to be the winning run. Eastern pulls the upset and advances; Berlin is eliminated.

Starting Pitchers: BE, Jake Greger. B, Anthony Marzi.

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 9 New Britain 16, No. 24 New Milford 3
New Milford 000 003 0 - 3 3 3
New Britain 405 025 x - 16 18 1
WP: Albert Pienkowksi. LP: Derik Brady.

Starting Pitchers: NM, Derik Brady. NB, Albert Pienkowksi. Andrew Millard replaces Brady in bottom of fourth for New Milford

Starting Lineups: New Milford: LF Stone ... RF Bernardi ... 2B LoRusso ... DH Phillips ... 3B Lavallee ... P Brady ... SS Ostner ... 1B D'Ariano ... 2B Casanova. New Britain: RF Linares ... CF Nunez ... SS Rivera ... C McLeod ... LF Kane ... 3B Martinez ... DH Sturges ... 2B Homar ... 1B Downes.

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 12 Southington 6, No. 21 Westhill 3
Westhill 001 010 1 - 3 6 1
Southington 400 011 x - 6 6 1
WP: Sal Romano. LP: John Porter.

Notes: Tyler Rich hits a one-out home run for Westhill, 6-3 Southington. The Knights then work around another hit to close the game out with a victory and advance to Round 2.

Starting Pitchers: S, Sal Romano. W, John Porter.

Class L State Tournament
No. 20 Sheehan 6, No. 13 Berlin 0

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 10 Bristol Central 14, No. 23 Danbury 4

GameDay Live: State Baseball Tournament

We've got you covered for Opening Day of CIAC state tournament play with live updates from the biggest baseball games of the first round. Follow us live throughout the day and night and feel free to comment with your thoughts of the games and your team's chances this postseason.

Class S State Tournament
First Round
No. 21 St. Paul 18, No. 12 Goodwin Tech 0
Bottom of Sixth, Suspended
St. Paul 040 (11)12 - 18 14 0
Goodwin Tech 000 000 - 0 1 5
Notes: Game is now suspended until tomorrow. By rule, a tournament game must go seven innings.
Starting Pitchers: SP, Rob Roberge. GT, Erik Flores. Goodwin's Justin Lemanski takes over for Flores to start the third inning.

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 4 Bristol Central 8, No. 29 Hall 2
Hall 000 000 2 - 2
Central 020 060 x - 8
WP: Craig Lejeune. LP: Dan Minnes.
Notes: Two-out, two-run double by Mark Corey breaks up the shutout, but Central gets the win and advances.
Starting Pitchers: BC, Craig Lejeune. H, Dan Minnes. Hall's Riley Carroll replaces Minnes on the mound with no out in the fifth.

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 10 Newington 5, No. 23 Brien McMahon 0
McMahon 000 000 0 - 0
Newington 001 004 x - 5
WP: Brian Daniello. LP: Cole Bryant.
Notes: Newington's Snyder had a two-run single in the four-run sixth inning.
Starting Pitchers: BM, Brian Daniello. N, Cole Bryant.

Class L State Tournament
First Round
No. 20 Bristol Eastern at No. 13 Berlin
Game postponed to tomorrow, 7 p.m., rain

Class S State Tournament
First Round
No. 25 Terryville at No. 8 Lyman Memorial
Game postponed to tomorrow, 3:30 p.m., rain

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 12 Westhill at No. 12 Southington
Game postponed to tomorrow, 3:30 p.m., rain

Class LL State Tournament
First Round
No. 24 New Milford at No. 9 New Britain
Game postponed to tomorrow, 3 p.m., rain