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DARIEN, CT — For the first time in 17 years, a Darien Little League team has won the 10U District 1 championship.

Darien claimed the title on Monday in a thrilling 1-0 win over Stamford American. The team was cheered on by a large crowd that flocked to the game at Drotar Park in Stamford.

“These young athletes have demonstrated incredible teamwork and resilience. It was an honor to lead them through this championship. On to the Sectionals!” said head coach John Butler, who is also president of the Darien Little League.

The momentum of the game was set early by starting pitcher Joey Paccione, who pitched three scoreless innings. Pitchers Chase Sutter and Rex Paquette finished the game with one scoreless inning each.

Darien also relied on its defense, which was evident on the first play of the game when first baseman Charlie MacLane caught a pop fly in foul territory.

Later, outfielder Alex Abelson brought the ball quickly into the field and held the runner at first base with a single.

Johnny Huntington, Phil Gironde and Dillon Chadda also made significant contributions in the outfield, while the infield remained solid with key outs from Paquette, Sutter, Paccione, MacLane and Luca Hidaka. Hugh Butler and Lucas Smith were stalwart catchers.

At the plate, Wells Johnson had to force the opposing pitcher to work in an eight-pitch at-bat.

The final out was a dramatic pop fly catch by Paccione that sealed the win.