NORWALK, Conn. – Petro Oil won the West Division championship in the Norwalk Recreation and Parks softball tournament after a midseason bus crash nearly cost the team any chance of playing in the tournament.
Petro defeated Mitchell Maintenance, 12-4, in the winner-take-all championship game. Mitchell beat Petro, 18-4, in the winners’ bracket final. Petro advanced to the title round by beating the Cougars, 12-7, in the losers' bracket final. Petro needed to beat Mitchell twice to win the title and set up the winner-take-all game with a 14-4 victory.
Petro won the first half championship in the West Division of the Tuesday Night League with an 8-1 record. Just before the second half of the season began, however, four players were hurt in an accident in New Jersey. The players were riding in a bus to a bachelor party in Atlantic City for teammate Billy Madsen. The driver of the bus lost control, and it rolled over. The players suffered bruised and cracked ribs, according to player/manager Sam McDonald, and most of them missed four to six weeks in the second half of the season.
Petro went 1-8 and squeaked into the playoffs with a 9-9 overall mark.
But they team returned to form in the playoffs. Jerry Ribiero’s two home runs, his first of the season, led the way in the championship game win.
Petro’s roster includes Sam McDonald,Peter Agosto, Billy Palmer; Billy Madsen, Bobby Ginter, Zach Lyons, Justin Meaney, Jonathon Agosto, Vinny Monti, Chris Was and Jerry Ribero.