(Newburyport MA) The Clippers continue to win.
This afternoon it was, 2-0, over Lynnfield.
Coach Mark Rowe said afterwards that he was happy with the 5-0 start but wasn’t thrilled with the way his team played today.
“I think that we were a little flat,” he said. “Maybe it was because it was the first really warm day we’ve played in.”
There were popups and weak grounders by a team that has been making solid connections regularly.
“The majority of our at bats were disappointing,” Coach Rowe added.
But steady pitching by sophomore Owen Tahnk kept Newburyport in the game despite only three hits.
Senior Trent Balian pitched very effectively for the Pioneers.
Good teams find ways to win.
“We took advantage of our opportunities,” said Coach Rowe.
THE opportunity was the fifth inning. A one-out single by senior Michael Habib was followed by two walks (Jack Fehlner & Tony Lucci).
Luke Stallard’s long fly to center delivered Michael while Jake Buontempo’s sharp single to center brought Jack home.
Those two runs held up.
Lynnfield (1-4) had chances.
The Pioneers collected five hits and had runners in scoring position in the first four innings as well as the sixth inning.
“We couldn’t get him in,” said Lynnfield coach John O’Brien post-game, “that was the story of the game.”
“Newburyport took advantage of a couple of walks that hurt us,” said Coach O’Brien referencing Newburyport’s two-run fifth inning. “They got the timely hit.”
Evan Balian paced Lynnfield with two hits.
Spencer Riley hit a part of the leftfield fence in the fourth inning in a section of fencing that doesn’t exist in most of the rest of the field. Could have gone out if it wasn’t pulled so much. He had to settle for a double.
Newburyport pitcher Owen Tahnk remembered it: “That double off the fence was a scare.”
Owen limited Lynnfield to five hits and yielded only two walks.
“His limiting the walks was important,” said Coach Rowe.
Owen had six strikeouts getting two each in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th innings. In each of those innings the Pioneers had runners in scoring position.
“My slider and curve were working well today,” said Owen. “I got grounders and fly balls on off-speed pitches.”
Coach O’Brien: “We’re back to ground zero after getting a nice win the other day.”
Ryan Archer: “Our goal every day is to go 1-0. We have two games coming up and that’s what we’re focusing on.”
I didn’t hear the news, but I saw the news. The players weren’t wearing masks! Is this where I say, “It’s about time!” and give away my politics?
(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)