(Amesbury MA) Lynnfield gave Amesbury (6-3) too many chances and it finally caught up to them in the last inning.
The Pioneers had issued seven walks and had hit two batters through six innings. However, they had a 5-3 lead.
That lead vanished after the Indians got two more walks in their half of the seventh. Senior Tiernan Bentley drove both walkers (Tim Gilleo & Trevor Kimball) in to tie the score.
“I haven’t been hitting all that well this season,” said Tiernan afterwards. “It felt good to get one.”
Two hit-batsmen followed (Luke Arsenault & Jake Harring) loading the bases with one out and Shea Cucinotta the batter. Shea had a hit the previous inning.
With a chance to seal the outcome, Shea delivered a shot to the outfield that scored pinchrunner Donovan Landry and the celebrating began for Amesbury’s 6-5 walk-off win.
“I’m not going to lie,” explained Shea, “I was a little nervous coming up in that situation. My heart was beating out of my chest! I knew that I just had to put the ball out there somewhere to score the run. It felt great.”
“Give Amesbury credit,” said Lynnfield coach John O’Brien post-game. “They hung in there and got the big hit when they needed it.”
“We just can’t walk people and hit people,” added Coach O’Brien. “You need to throw strikes and let the guys make the plays.”
Despite the loss, Lynnfield senior Evan Balian had an impressive afternoon. He came to bat in the seventh inning with a chance to hit for the cycle.
Evan hit a homer (3rd inning) over the rightfield fence and a triple (fifth inning) over the rightfielder’s head. He had a single in the first inning. Evan had three RBI.
A key moment in this game was the Lynnfield seventh. The Pioneers (3-6) had the two-run lead but Amesbury reliever Tiernan Bentley was able to retire the side in order. Tiernan got the dangerous Evan to ground out to first to end that inning.
“Coach (Brierley) told me to go out there and throw strikes and that’s exactly what I did,” said Tiernan.
Lynnfield got two runs in the top of the first. An RBI by Evan Balian and a wild throw to third on a steal attempt accounted for the LHS runs.
The Indians managed to get both those runs back thanks to six walks and a hit batsman in the first two innings. They did strand six runners.
“We gave them runs early and we left the bases loaded in the first two innings,” said Coach Joel Brierley. “We have to do better.”
The Pioneers got out of that second inning on an unusual play. Tim Gilleo’s popup into short left attracted both 3B Trent Balian and SS Nick Razzaboni. The fielders collided but Nick was able to stick out his hand and make a diving catch to save multiple runs from scoring.
Tim Pivero started the third inning in relief of starter Blake Peters. A nice throw (LF Aidan Burke) and tag (catcher Evan Balian) nailed Trevor Kimball at the plate for the final out of that inning.
Lynnfield built their lead to 5-2 in the sixth. A wild pitch (Drew Scialdone) allowed Luke Martinho to score. RF Luke Arsenault tossed out Nick Razzaboni at the plate trying to score on Jack Bird’s single, to record the final out of the inning.
Amesbury got that run back with a Luke Arsenault triple and a sacrifice fly by Jake Harring in their half of the sixth inning.
Amesbury then took advantage of the walks and HPB’s in the 7th and rallied to earn a walk-off win.
The Indians collected all their six hits in the final four innings.
“Once we get to see a pitcher for a second or third time, that’s when we score our runs,” explained Coach Brierley. “Even when we’re down, I know we’ll find ways to score.”
“We wanted the top of our order (Jake Harring, Shea Cucinotta, Jeremy Lopez) to get up in that final inning,” said Coach Brierley. “The walks and hit-batsmen enabled it to happen.”
Winning pitcher Tiernan Bentley is a senior. “I plan to go to UConn in the fall and play rugby.”
Lynnfield starter Blake Peters collected two hits. “Blake has pitched three or four really nice games,” said Coach O’Brien. “It wasn’t his day today.”
Trevor Kimball started for Amesbury.
Weather was good with low 80’s and a breeze.
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