Softball playoffs: Burns Insurance tops CT Fire Protection

Burns Insurance used a six-run rally in the bottom of the fifth inning to turn back CT Fire Protection, 12-4, in the Sweet 16 round of the Milford Recreation Men’s Softball League playoffs at Washington Field on Monday night.

Top-seeded Burns Insurance will play either No. 8 Stonebridge or No. 9 Viscuso Motors/7 Seas in the quarterfinals. The semifinals and finals will be played Monday, Aug. 22, at Washington Field, beginning at 6:15 p.m.

CT Fire Protection, the 16th seed, scored four runs in its first at bat.

Graham Lapham and Anthony Ianniello had singles before a run scored when Jay Sansone’s grounder was misplayed.

Matt Rabuse, Kevin French and Matt McCormack followed with RBI singles.

Burns Insurance halved the deficit in the bottom of the inning and tied the game in the second.

Ed Kasuba, Chris Cataldi and Jim Sherrick opened the frame with singles, with Sherrick’s hit up the middle bringing in a run. Pat Fallon pulled a single into right field to take the score to 4-2.

Steve Andranovich and Rick Laskey opened the second with walks. Jerry Graziani plated a run with a single and Jake Kasuba tied the game with a base hit to right-center.

Burns Insurance took the lead in the third inning, but not before Sanzone made a spectacular leaping catch of Fallon’s drive up the gap.

Sherrick had opened the rally with a double to left field and scored on Tyler Kasuba’s two-out single.

After its first-inning outburst, CT Fire Protection had a few opportunities to put runs on the board.

McCormack singled to start the second, only to have Burns Insurance pitcher Cataldi get the next three batters.

Cataldi had help when he retired the side in order in the third. Brian Rainey went to the fence in right-center and used all of his reach to reel in Jerry Raccio’s drive for the third out.

McCormack had his third hit of the game in the fourth.

Andranovich opened the Burns Insurance fourth with a single. He then had to stay alert as CT Fire Protection pitcher Lapham robbed Laskey and Graziani of base hits with stellar glove work on consecutive line drives.

Rainey rescued the rally with a drive to center field that just eluded a diving try by Rick Russo and Burns Insurance had a 6-4 lead.

Russo singled to open the fifth, but advanced no further

Burns Insurance doubled its lead in the bottom of the inning.

Jake Kasuba singled and Ed Kasuba walked.

Mark Stanley then erased the next two batters with fine plays at third base, before Sherrick ripped an RBI line drive over the third base bag for his second double.

With the game at 7-4, Fallon had the key at bat.

After ripping the ball deep to first, Fallon won the footrace to the bag to keep the inning going. Tyler Kasuba singled home a run, Bob Rome walked, Andranovich knocked in two and Laskey another for a 12-4 lead.

Sparks and Raccio had singles for CT Fire Protection in the top of the sixth, but advanced no further.

Burns Insurance took the game to the 10-run rule threshold in its next at bat.

Rainey, Joe Petito, Jake Kasuba and Ed Kasuba had consecutive singles to get the needed two runs across the plate before an out was recorded.

CT Fire Protection had advanced with a 12-11 victory over No. 17 The Magicians.