Confreda shuts down Merritt Island as VSLL Majors reach state championship game


Brennan Confreda, shown here during the District 2 championship game, struck out 11 of the 24 batters he faced Saturday as the Viera-Suntree Little League All-Star Majors baseball team defeated Merritt Island 8-1 to reach the state championship game.


Getting bragging rights was nice.

But that was hardly the real prize for the Viera-Suntree Little League All-Star Majors baseball team after an 8-1 victory over Merritt Island on Saturday in Coral Springs.

The victory means the VSLL will play North Springs for the state championship Sunday morning at Mullins Park.

Brennan Confreda had a big day on the mound for the VSLL, out-dueling Merritt Island ace Asher Anderson in the game to decide the winner of Pool B.

Confreda struck out 11 while allowing four hits and walking two. Anderson, meanwhile, struck out 12 for Merritt Island.

The VSLL jumped out to a four-run lead in the top of the first as Brandon Reiter, Jonah Peacock, Finn Goldinger and Dominic Leoni all singled. Confreda then hit a two-run triple.

Micah Cheatham had a double and scored a run for the VSLL. Evan Lipski had a single and an RBI. Austin Marshall had a single, walked once and scored a run.

Earlier in the day, the VSLL needed a big rally to score an 11-7 victory over Niceville.

The VSLL committed three errors and found itself trailing 6-0 after the first inning. It was 7-3 going into the bottom of the fifth when the VSLL scored eight runs to go up 11-7.

Cheatham went 2-for-3 with an RBI and scored four runs. Reiter didn’t have a hit, but he was hit by a pitch twice and scored twice. Goldinger went 3-for-4 with three RBIs.

Leoni had two hits, including a triple, and an RBI. Austin Marshall had a hit, a walk and an RBI.

Starter Colton Marshall struck out four and got relief help from Izzy Birru and Mikey Minarik, who struck out three in 1 2/3 innings.

In Friday’s state tournament opener, the VSLL defeated Northeast 7-2.

Both teams used multiple pitchers to try to save their arms for Saturday, which would prove fruitful for the VSLL.

Cheatham had a single, a walk, two RBIs and scored a run. Reiter had a single, a walk, an RBI and scored twice. Goldinger had a hit and two RBIs. Leoni also had a hit. Lipski walked three times and scored twice.

On the mound, Colton Marshall struck out three, Confreda had two strikeouts and Lipski struck out four.

And now, it’s onto the state championship game.