New Milford's Post 31 baseball team experienced plenty of peaks and valley en route to a 16-16 record this summer.

Still, coach Paul Iverson's Zone 5 teen diamond crew should remember fondly the season's stretch drive.

The New Milford teens won their final four regular-season games, including a closing doubleheader on a steaming hot July day at Oxford High School, to qualify for the state tournament.

Post 31 dropped an 8-5 decision July 20 to Zone 6 rival Moosup at Volunteers Field in New Milford to bow out of the tournament.

The visitors raced out to a 6-0 cushion before New Milford bats came alive.

Kevin Eherts followed Derik Brady's fifth-inning single by powering Post 31's first home run of the campaign.

New Milford plated its final three runs in the seventh frame on Brady's double, Ehert's RBI single, ensuing hits by Andrew Millard and Donny Ek, and Christian Santana's RBI fielder's choice.

Santana, Brady, and Ek each backed Eherts' two-hit, three-RBI performance with two hits apiece.

Millard, Jeff Sturm and Brady teamed to handle the Post 31 mound duties.

New Milford's season thus came to a close at 15-12 in Zone 5 competition and 16-16 overall.

Coach Iverson said he's pleased with the progress of the Post 31 program and glad he decided to go with a young team this summer.

"Although young again this year, by design the past two years," he said, "they grew with every game and, down the stretch, when they could have packed it in, they played with heart to win four of four and qualify for the state tournament -- not an easy task."

"We only lose two players because of age," he concluded, "and hopefully the others will all try out again in March. If they do, the 2011 season looks to be very good for Post 31."