(Amesbury MA) Ipswich was coming off their first win.
Amesbury was coming off two tough late-inning losses.
Two teams trending in opposite directions.
And Ipswich kept trending in a positive direction with a three-spot in the top of the first inning.
But that’s where it ended for the Tigers.
Amesbury responded with ten runs in their half of the first inning and cruised from there to a 15-5 victory.
The mercy rule kicked in during the Amesbury fifth inning.
“We needed this after last week,” said AHS coach Joel Brierley afterwards. “However, we didn’t plan on beginning the way we did today.”
“We started today thinking that we would win,” said shortstop Shea Cucinotta post-game. “You just can’t take a team for granted. But we did pull together and get a victory.”
Special game for Shea because it was his first of the season. The Cape Ann League All-Star has been missed by the Indians (5-3) for sure.
“Now we have Shea back as well as our senior catcher (Tim Gilleo),” said Coach Brierley. “So we have a couple of weeks to put everything together before the tournament.”
The Amesbury hitting has been good and continued to be just that today.
The Indians had fourteen hits to go with the fifteen runs in only 4+ innings.
Eight of the nine AHS starters had hits. Luke Arsenault had three hits, while Trevor Kimball and Jake Harring added two hits.
The biggest hit in the game may well have been Jeremy Lopez’s in the big first inning. The Amesbury senior cleared the bases with a two-out triple to right.
That opening inning had all sorts of nightmarish ingredients for the Tigers (1-8). There were two outfield errors, two hit batsmen, and two walks. That’s a mix that will get a team in serious trouble for sure………and it did in the visitors.
Ipswich was coming off an exciting 9-8, last-inning, win over Pentucket. Their bats were still hot at the outset of today’s game.
Two batters in they had a run after Finn MacLennon doubled and Evan Stein singled. A few batters later Wes Smith drove in another run with a single. A fielder’s choice (Jake Reily) led to the third run.
Great start for Ipswich but it didn’t continue. AHS starter Drew MacDonald pitched clean innings in the 2nd and 3rd innings. Tiernan Bentley took care of things in the 4th and 5th innings.
The Indians needed a run in their fifth inning to activate the mercy rule. They got what they needed. Will Arsenault doubled. Josh Sorgini’s fielder’s choice moved Will to 3B. Tiernan Bentley’s single brought home the game-ending run.
“We came out here and we wanted to have some fun today and that’s what we did,” explained Drew MacDonald.
Drew claimed that he knew the source of Amesbury’s good hitting. “We’ve been having Jeremy’s older brother throw some BP. I think he’s our good-luck charm now.”
Shea Cucinotta was excited to be playing again after being injured playing football. “It was great to go out there with the boys. I missed it. Getting in for the next half of the season is going to be real good. I was a little rusty out there today, but it feels good to be moving again.”
Ipswich finished with six hits. Wes Smith had two of them to go with an RBI.
The Indians added three runs to their ten runs in the second inning. Jake Harring’s double brought in two of the runs.
Ipswich had single runs in the fourth (Finn MacLennon rbi) and the fifth (Drew Lane rbi).
Jake Harring, Shea Cucinotta, Jeremy Lopez, Drew Scialdone, Aidan Donovan, and Luke Arsenault each scored twice.
Jake Reily started for Ipswich and gave way to Drew Lane in the first inning.
The weather was splendid. Temperatures were in the 70’s with a nice breeze.
There will be a tournament at the end of the season. “It will be different this year because any team, no matter what their record is, can be in the tournament,” said Coach Brierley. “We want to be over .500 and deserve to be there.”
The tournament won’t START until June 15th. Amesbury gets out of school on June 17th. “Our guys are completely okay will playing after school is over,” said Coach Brierley.
Amesbury faced Ipswich at Ipswich a week ago. Drew MacDonald pitched a complete-game three hitter with seven strikeouts. AHS won, 11-0.
Nice running catch by Amesbury CF Cam Stanley.
(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge significantly if you click on them.)