Photo: The Marauders with the silverware.
After defeating one-loss Lynnfield High, 5-2, to defend its Brendan Grant Tournament title on Saturday, May 27, the 17-3 Belmont High Baseball team was eager to discover Tuesday what seed they would receive in the upcoming Division 2 North sectional playoffs.
But the call they got from the MIAA – the organization that oversees high school sports in Massachusetts – came a day early with news that came as a surprise not just to the Marauders but to many highly touted Bay State teams.
On Monday, the selection committee of the Baseball “Super 8” playoffs made Belmont the eighth and final squad selected to compete in the elite tournament with seven of the best teams in the state.
“I’m very happy for the seniors, they’ve earned it,” said Belmont’s long-time head coach Jim Brown in the Boston Herald.
The reward for Belmont being selected to play with the big kids is a first-round meeting Wednesday, May 31 against the consensus number one team in the state, 19-3 St. John’s Shrewsbury. The game will be played in the central Massachusetts town that straddles Worcester at 4 p.m.
Belmont leapfrogged over teams such as 19-1 Lynn Classical as well as Methuen and Andover which pundits believed had the edge over the Marauders, a Division 2 squad which has not faced any of the other seven teams in the playoffs this season.
While familiar to hockey, the double-elimination Super Eight playoff is a recent addition to the state tournament, first introduced in 2014 with Newton North taking the title. The past two years Braintree has won the crown.