STAMFORD, Conn. – Scott Giorgi reluctantly flipped the calendar to 2013. The manager of the Stamford American Legion Junior Division baseball team hated to say goodbye to 2012.
Giorgi will be honored Friday night as the Connecticut American Legion Coach of the Year at a dinner in Southington. Giorgi, who was married in the fall, led Stamford to its first state championship last summer. Stamford finished 29-4 and also won the Northeast Regional championship.
“I’m kind of upset that 2012 ended,’’ said Giorgi, a West Harrison resident and a Port Chester native. “It was a good year for me. I didn’t want it to turn to 2013. I wish I could rewind 2012.”
Stamford, which lost in the state championship in 2011, bounced back last summer despite having some question marks on its team. Several key pitchers had aged out, along with some key offensive contributors.
It didn’t stop Stamford, which won Zone 4 with a 23-4 record and entered the state tournament as the No. 3 seed. In the one-and-done state tournament, Stamford’s stiffest test came in the quarterfinals. Trailing Bethel 4-0, Stamford rallied for a 5-4 victory. Giorgi’s team scored three runs in the sixth to take the lead for good. Stamford beat West Hartford, 5-1, in the semifinals and Southington, 4-0, in the finals.
Stamford won four straight Senior Division state titles from 1954-57, but had never won a Junior Division state crown. Junior Division players are 17-and-under, seniors 19-and-under.
“I think the season unraveled in a positive way right from winter workouts on,’’ Giorgi said. “I had a really good feeling about our team. I thought if we won our zone we could take the next step and win the states. Really, there’s nothing I thought that we could’ve done differently.”
Friday’s honor is the final decoration for last summer’s run. “I’m very humbled for the recognition,’’ Giorgi said. “I had great players and great coaches. It’s fantastic that we’re being recognized. I think it speaks well for our program.”