Category Archives: Lynnfield

Flannery O’Connor (24 points) drives Amesbury past Lynnfield 65-50

Flannery O’Connor (24 points) surrounded by Pioneers

Alli Napoli double-teamed

(Haverhill MA) There had been six lead changes and seven ties.

Then senior Flannery O’Connor took over in the third quarter.

The Cape Ann League All-Star engineered a run of nine unanswered points and a slim one-point lead (36-35) moved to a breathing-room 45-35 score.

The second-half surge of points was too much for foul-prone Lynnfield to overcome and they fell to (18-4) Amesbury 65-50 on Wednesday night at Whittier.

“We hung around for three quarters,” said Lynnfield coach Peter Bocchino afterwards.  “We ran out of gas in the fourth quarter.”

The Pioneers (14-9) did get within eight (51-43) with 5 ½ minutes to go in the game.

Ciara Sullivan

But then junior Alli Napoli set up teammate Ciara Sullivan for consecutive three’s and Amesbury’s double-digit spread was restored for good.

Tori Morelli and Cate MacDonald

Continuous fouling by both teams ruined any chance for patterned offense to be on display.  There were plenty of one-on-one’s which turned up fouls or layups.

Alli Napoli (Amesbury) and Tori Morelli (Lynnfield) were both in early foul trouble and on their respective benches for much of the first half.

The missing twosome were usually steadying influences on their teams and without them, the play was often ragged in the first half.

“I liked the way that the girls stayed composed with Alli out most of the first half,” said Amesbury coach Gregg Dollos.

Amesbury had a six-point lead (23-17) with two minutes left in the half but a three by freshman Riley Hallahan and a layup by Grace Klonsky and Lynnfield was back tight, 23-22, at the half.

Amesbury was 19-for-27 from the foul line

The Pioneers had a four-point lead (29-25) three minutes into the second half but two free throws by Alli Napoli and a layup by Flannery O’Connor, that Alli assisted on, and the teams were tied.

Three free throws by Melissa Morelli (14 points) had Lynnfield within one (36-35) with only three minutes remaining in the third quarter.

This was when Flannery took over and led AHS to separation.  Part of the nine-point run was a triple (McKenna Hallinin) set up by Flannery.

Lynnfield played a zone defense and Amesbury struggled to get open looks.

“They were playing a zone,” said Flannery afterwards.  “Moving the ball makes that defense work.  I try to find cracks and dive into them.”

Faced with tight coverage whenever she touched the ball, Flannery was quick to find open teammates.

McKenna Hallinan looks to the hoop

The Hallinan twins (Avery and McKenna) brought energy, points, and defense.  The two freshmen helped carry the scoring load for the Indians in the first half.

Avery ended the game with twelve points while McKenna totaled nine.

Freshman Cate MacDonald tallied twelve points for LHS.  “Our freshman (Cate) came to play tonight,” said Coach Bocchino.  “She got a learning experience.”

I was impressed with the ball-handling of sophomore Grace Klonsky.  Several times she took the ball the full length of the court for a score.

Amesbury will now face St. Mary’s (Lynn) at the Tsongas Arena on Saturday.  The Spartans had a decisive win over Amesbury during the regular season.

Lynnfield had two easy tourney wins before facing Amesbury in the D3 North semifinals.  The Pioneers downed Charlestown 53-9 and Greater Lawrence 69-43.

Peter Bocchino was the CAL coach-of-the-year.

Mary Bullis and Riley Hallahan

Lynnfield had been 5-52 over the previous three seasons.

The Pioneers tourney win over Charlestown was their first since 2009.

Despite missing most of the first half, Alli Napoli finished with eleven points.

The Pioneers missed thirteen free throws.

Amesbury box

Lynnfield box

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

McKenna Hallinan

Alli Napoli

Alli Napoli moves into an open space

Caroline Waisnor sets to receive a pass

Flannery O’Connor in traffic

Grace Klonsky

Grace Klonsky and McKenna Hallinan

Melissa Morelli and Avery Hallinan

 

 

 

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Lynnfield qualifies for the tourney with 47-18 win over Triton

Pioneers’ defense forced 31 Triton turnovers

Tori Morelli (15 points) for Lynnfield

(Byfield MA) Friday night was a special night for the Lynnfield Pioneers girls basketball team.

Lynnfield defeated Triton, 47-18, and qualified for the post-season.

Extra special because the Pioneers (10-8) were 5-52 over the past three seasons and lost their coach (Jim Perry) in April.

“It means a lot tonight,” said Coach Peter Bocchino afterwards.  “I was supposed to share the moment with (Coach) Jim Perry but unfortunately he’s not here.”

Another tough loss for Triton (3-14).  “Our struggle all year has been trying to score,” said Vikings coach Dan Boyle.  “We can’t find any consistency on offense.”

The visitors came out in a zone and defended Triton into a night full of turnovers and missed shots.

“We’ve been working hard on defense,” said Tori Morelli (15 points).

Battle in the lane

“Our zone defense has stifled a lot of people because we’re pretty long and athletic,” said Coach Bocchino.

The Pioneers had their share of struggles with turnovers (22) but, unlike Triton, they put points on the board regularly.

The direction of this game was set in the first quarter.  The Pioneers put eleven unanswered points together while the Vikings put twelve turnovers together.  Triton’s only points (two Caitlin White free throws) of the quarter came with fourteen seconds left. Lynnfield 11, Triton 2.

Sophomore Ava Buonfiglio (11 points) had two three’s for LHS in their fast start.

The Vikings lessened their miscues thereafter, but they didn’t get their 11th point until there were only three minutes left in the game.

Ava Buonfiglio (11 points)

The Pioneers put nine straight together at the end of the 2nd quarter, into the 3rd quarter, and a 17-6 lead bulged to 26-6.  Ava, Riley Hallahan, Tori Morelli, and Catherine MacDonald contributed points.

Lynnfield collected fourteen in a row in the second half and a 26-10 spread became 40-10 in the final quarter.  Melissa Morelli totaled six of the fourteen points.

Melissa/Tori Morelli: “We’ve worked hard all season and it’s finally paid off.  We’re no longer a team you just roll over.  We’ve played the season for Coach Perry.”

“Some role players stepped up, Ava (Buonfiglio) had big three’s and Riley (Hallahan) was killing the boards,” said Coach Bocchino.

Coach Bocchino: “I kept telling the team that we weren’t going to take the Sullivan Rule bid.  I wanted to get into the tournament the real way and we did it tonight.”

Seniors Colleen McCarthy and Emily Karvielis each had six points for Triton.

Neither team shot “lights out,” but the lights did go completely out with a few minutes remaining.  Both teams shot better after the lights came back……..I’m not sure what to make of that!

Lynnfield box

Triton box

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Emily Karvielis chases a loose ball

Battle for control

Caroline Waisnor (10) and Kerry Power (11)

Catherine MacDonald

Colleen McCarthy launches a three

Grace Klonsky catches an inbounds pass

Jump pass by Grace Klonsky

Melissa Morelli to the hoop

Paige Volpone (33) tries to get by Riley Hallahan (22)

Scramble in the lane

 

 

 

 

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Newburyport sweeps the CAL cross country championships

Lindsay MacLellan of North Reading (first)

Sam Acquaviva of Newburyport (first)

(Amesbury MA) The Newburyport Clippers had a big day at Woodsom Farm taking the Cape Ann League cross country titles in the boys and girls division.

Led by Sam Acquaviva and John Lucey, the Clippers added the CAL championship to their undefeated regular season.

“Sam is Sam,” said NHS coach Don Hennigar of his CAL championship repeat winner.  “That was the best race of John’s life.  To finish second in this league is so good.”

The misty/muddy conditions worried Sam although he ran most of the race alone.  “There was a lot that could go wrong in the conditions.  I always assume that the other runners will come back.”

On teammate John Lucey finishing second?  “It was nice to have John behind me.  It was unexpected.  He had a great race.”

John Lucey (2nd)

Newburyport won the race by forty points: (1) Sam Acquaviva, (2) John Lucey, (6) Dreese Fadil, (9) Cam Lasson, (17) Peter King.

Other top ten finishers: (3) Tyler Stranc, (4) Peter Lopata, (5) Sebastian Gilligan, (7) Will Kenny, (8) John Astrofsky, (10) Keegan Ritchie.

The totals in the girls’ race were much closer: Newburyport (68), Triton (76), Hamilton-Wenham (80).

The point scorers for Newburyport were; Ellie Schulson (4th), Lindsey Roberts (7th), Lucy Gagnon (14th), Olivia D’Ambrosio (20th), Caroline Wilson (23rd).

Clippers coach Don Hennigar: “Ellie Schulson (4th) and Lindsey Roberts (7th) were above and beyond today.  This was probably the best race Lindsey has ever had.”

Junior Lindsay MacLellan of North Reading was the upset winner.  Last year’s winner, Eva Feuerbach of Manchester-Essex, finished second.

Eve Feuerbach (2nd)

Don Hennigar: “That girl from Manchester-Essex doesn’t get beat very often and the girl from North Reading (Lindsay MacLellan) won by a lot.  Most people would call that an upset.”

I asked Lindsay MacLellan how she won the race.  “A lot of mud.  A lot of heart.  I’m a hilly person so this was the kind of course I like.  I gained separation (from Eva Feuerbach) at 2.75 miles.”

The win by Newburyport avenged a meet loss they had to Triton during the regular season.

Other top ten finishers; (3) Ellie Gay-Killeen, (5) Phoebe Rubio, (6) Lana Crosson, (8) Ava Cote, (9) Jemma Shea, (10) Sarah Harrington.

The race was held at Woodsom Farm in Amesbury.  Originally scheduled for Saturday at Bradley Palmer State Park but the weather forced a change.  The weather actually wasn’t all that great at Woodsom today.

Second-place finisher John Lucey: “It was a tough race for everyone.  I was able to plot the best course through the mud in some sections.  Coming down the hills was dangerous in some places.”

John ran much of the race with no one near him ahead (Sam Acquaviva) or behind (Tyler Stranc).  How do you stay tuned in?  “I kind of get delusional.  Then I keep going because I think someone’s right behind me.”

Excellent job done by Amesbury AD Glenn Gearin and his staff handling the parking and other logistical issues.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge if you click on them.)

Newburyport’s Katherine Sheehy and Annie Siemasko accept the first-place trophy

Girls start

Ellie Gay-Killeen (Triton) 3rd

Ellie Schulson (Newburyport) 4th

Phoebe Rubio (Pentucket) 5th

Lana Crosson (Masconomet) 6th

Lindsey Roberts (Newburyport) 7th

Ava Cote (Hamilton-Wenham) 8th

Jemma Shea (Hamilton-Wenham) 9th

Sarah Harrington (Triton) 10th

Boys start

Sam Acquaviva shows off the Woodsom Farm mud

Tyler Stranc (Triton) 3rd

Peter Lopata (Pentucket) 4th

Sebastian Gilligan (Masconomet) 5th

Dreese Fadil (Newburyport) 6th

Will Kenny (Manchester-Essex) 7th

John Astrofsky (Lynnfield) 8th

Cam Lasson (Newburyport) 9th

Keegan Ritchie (Triton) 10th

 

 

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Newburyport finishes regular season with 2-0 win over Lynnfield

Thomas Buston (12) pressures goalie Aiden Guthro

Eamon McElhinney (4) and Nate Bass (8) battle near the goal

(Newburyport MA) A win would have given Lynnfield the most wins they’ve ever had in a season.

But there was a bigger picture, and that changed the tone of today’s matchup with Newburyport.

The seedings for the post-season tournament are in and Lynnfield is #1.  That position would not be affected by this afternoon’s game.

“The kids wanted to win it,” said Lynnfield coach Brent Munroe, “but it wasn’t a meaningful game for us.”

Dangerous play

The Clippers also had a position in the tournament sewn up too.  So you had two teams in their own versions of “spring training” mode.

Newburyport won the game 2-0 getting second-half goals from Andrew Moreland and Ronan Harrington.

The Clippers (9-4-5) had lost 3-0 to the Pioneers (14-2-2) in September.

“That loss fueled us to come back here and play better,” Newburyport goalie Aiden Guthro told me afterwards.

Despite playing everyone who was dressed to play, the Pioneers put plenty of pressure on the Clippers.  “They have some great players,” said Aiden.  “I can’t say enough about everyone in the back.”

The most dangerous of the Lynnfield forwards was senior Nate Bass.  He was a master at winning 50/50 balls and dribbling past players.  His best chance was a break-in from the right in the second half.  Aiden came out to challenge, and may have deflected the shot, as it rolled just wide left late in the game.

While the Clippers may have had fewer chances, they did cash in two of them.

Andrew Moreland (17) celebrates with teammates

Senior Andrew Moreland collected his fourth goal of the season less than minute into the second half.  “The ball bounced back to me after a throw-in,” explained Andrew.  “I was at the corner of the box when I got the ball.  I deliberately drove it into the upper right corner.”

Harry Bovee (9) and Andrew Moreland (17) eye an incoming ball

“That first goal surprised us,” said Coach Munroe.  “It was a long shot to a good spot.  Our goalie had no chance.  I’m not sure that he knew that the shot had been taken.”

Lynnfield carried the play after Newburyport’s first goal but couldn’t find the equalizer.

In the last two minutes the Clippers were awarded a free kick from straightaway.  Senior Ronan Harrington took the kick.

“Ronan is probably the best free-kick taker in the Cape Ann League,” said Aiden.  “Anywhere inside of twenty yards he’ll put it in the top corner.  I felt confident with him taking the shot.”

Ronan sent his shot into the same upper corner that Andrew Moreland had earlier.

The Clippers came away with a satisfying 2-0 win.

Brent Munroe: “We’ll be the #1 seed in the tournament and hopefully we’ll play our best soccer during the next two weeks starting Sunday.”

Jon Luders

Jon Luders: “It was good to get guys minutes.  I still don’t like losing.  You want to win no matter what.  Now we’re on to the tournament.”

The Pioneers had gone nine straight games without a loss prior to today’s game.

The Clippers haven’t lost in six of their previous seven games.

Newburyport’s stadium is a terrific place to watch a soccer game with its elevated viewing on both sides.  I was on the turf surface which is also very good.

I wanted to talk to Newburyport coach Shawn Bleau after the game, but he “opted” to go to the parent/teacher open house being held indoors.  As a former teacher, I know that there are some things you don’t miss!

Over the past five years against each other, both teams have won three times and lost three times and there have been four ties.

The shutout was GK Aiden Guthro’s ninth of the season.  He holds the Newburyport career shutout record with twenty-three of them.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Joe Cibelli

Jack Healy (11), Eamon McElhinney (4), Ronan Harrington (6), Harry Bovee (9)

Jack Healy (11) and Thomas Buston (12) vie for a corner kick

Trying to contain Nate Bass

Ronan Harrington

Nate Bass (8) gets into a kick with Ronan Harrington (6) nearby

Jack Healy

George Coryell

Nate Bass threatens

Chris Connor

Aiden Guthro leaps to save

Aiden Guthro and Jack Healy celebrate the win

 

 

 

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Lynnfield stuns Masco with 2-2 tie in Cape Ann League boys soccer

Devin Ralph, David Gentile (22) and Pioneers keeper Jack Campbell

David Gentile (22) above the crowd

(Boxford MA) Those who saw this coming are part of the same (very) small group that expected David Price to pitch so well against Houston.

Lynnfield gained a 2-2 tie with Masco this afternoon at Masco.

Surprising?  You bet!

When it comes to Cape Ann League opponents, Masco doesn’t lose.  Happened only once in the last 102 matches against CAL teams.  That’s no typo!

Tom Buston gets high fives from teammate Jon Luders after tying the game in the second half

There had been six ties.  Make that seven after today.

Back to the improbability of these teams tying.  The Chieftains earlier this season had defeated the Pioneers, on their field, 5-1.

“The difference today was that in the first half we managed to get out, 1-1,” explained Lynnfield coach Brent Munroe afterwards.

Understand that the Masco soccer field clearly has its good end and its bad end.  Defending the “bad” end involves looking directly into the sun, facing the wind, and being noticeably downhill.

Connor Fitzgerald lines up a free kick late in the game

“They had those advantages in the first half and we came out with a tie,” added Coach Munroe.  “We had the advantages in the second half and although we didn’t outplay them we were closer to even.”

Masco broke the 1-1 tie thirteen minutes into the second half after a lot of good chances.  In the first meeting, the Chieftains (13-2-1) went from there to score three unanswered.  Not this time.

The Pioneers (12-1-2) hung tough today and with sixteen minutes left turned a corner kick into the tying goal.

Alejandro Lynch (13) and Josh Rubin (44)

I expected the home team to turn up the pressure but instead it was the visitors with the better chances in the closing minutes.

“I felt like we wanted to go for the tie,” said Coach Munroe, but our assistant coach said that we can win this one.  I’m so happy not to lose to Masco.  The last time we beat them was 2010.  The fact that I know that will tell you how meaningful it is.”

Masco coach Jared Scarpaci came away concerned about conditioning and scoring chances: “Near the end I think that fatigue kicked in for some of our guys.  We left some good chances on the table.”

Coach Scarpaci added that his team needed to work on dead ball plays.  “Both their scores were dead ball plays, one was off a free kick and the other after a corner kick.”

Nathan Bass tallied the first LHS goal.  Nathan was at the heading end of a straightaway free kick.  “It was a long ball into the box,” recalled Coach Munroe.  “Nathan Bass, who wins tons of head balls for us even though he is 5-6, went up, won it and put it in.”  That was scored fifteen minutes into the game.

Masco celebrates their first goal

Masco senior Darren Cryan tied things sixteen minutes later.  “Devin Ralph got the ball in from the outside to Darren Cryan in the middle,” said Coach Scapaci.  “Darren shot through traffic and it went in to the side.”

The Chieftains pulled ahead in the second half after misfiring on several glittering chances.  The goal came off a direct kick from Connor Fitzgerald.  The kick was from straightaway and was high. Both Lynnfield GK Jack Campbell and defender David Gentile went for it.  The result was that neither of them dealt with the ball cleanly leaving a juicy rebound for Masco’s Harry Kessel.

“Harry came off the opposite side,” said Coach Scapaci.  “He followed the shot and headed it in.”

Jon Luders (4) and Harry Warshafsky (10)

The Pioneers had an answer to the Masco goal eleven minutes later.  Jon Luders took a corner kick and the LHS senior sent the ball to the far post where teammate David Gentile got a head on it.

“David Gentile hit the ball back across the goal,” remembered Tom Buston. “I was on the near post and it came right to my feet and I placed it in.  I had taken a wide run in on the corner kick and they (Masco) weren’t ready for me to be on the front post.”

Masco certainly had the upper hand in scoring chances, but Jack Campbell, in the Lynnfield net, made wise decisions.  “Their goalie had great positional play,” said Coach Scarpaci.

“Both of the kids that scored (Nathan Bass and Tom Buston) have about ten goals each,” said Coach Munroe.

Senior Jon Luders was excited about the Pioneers good showing. “We gave it 100%.  It was awesome.  We have so many great athletes on this team.  Every guy on the field is a special, special player.  I love the way we’re playing right now.”

Haolan Zhan (22) gets between GK Jack Campbell and defender David Gentile (22)

Jon told me that he has committed to going to Seton Hall next year to play baseball.  “Soccer too?” I asked.  “I’ll be sticking with baseball,” he said.

The D2 Chieftains have non-league losses to D1 St. John’s Prep and D2 North Andover.

The last time I saw the Masco boys play was in the 2016 D2 title game versus unscored on Nauset.  The Chieftains did get a score but lost 2-1 at Manning Field in Lynn.

Lynnfield is unbeaten in their last seven games.  The tie today ended an eleven-game win streak for Masco.

Josh Rubin (44) and Aedan Salvador (11)

Masco’s only loss in the last 102 matches against Cape Ann League opponents was in 2015 against Pentucket.

A key to the tie today for Lynnfield?  Keeping high-scoring Josh Rubin in check.  Josh has had several hat tricks this season including one against Lynnfield in their earlier meeting.

Nice weather for the last part of October.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Mine!

Nathan Bass (8) had the first Lynnfield goal

Tom Buston

Aedan Salvadore (11) and Luke Martinho (9)

Aedan Salvadore (11) and Tom Hauser (2)

Connor Fitzgerald

Darren Cryan

Devin Ralph (6) and Jack Cleary (10)

Devin Ralph (6) dribbles and Matthew Juliano (3) defends

Chasing a lose ball

Jack Campbell saves

 

 

 

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Anna Maria Ferrante (goal/assist) lifts Lynnfield over Pentucket 2-0

Lynnfield celebrates their first goal

Anna Maria Ferrante (6) had a goal and an assist.

(West Newbury MA) Pentucket needed a win to qualify for a berth in the post-season.

And the Sachems are still looking for that important W after falling to Lynnfield, 2-0, on cloudy, rainy Wednesday afternoon of Cape Ann League action.

The Pioneers (11-2-2) scored twice during a 12-minute segment in the first half.  Junior Anna Maria Ferrante tallied one goal for the visitors and assisted on the other.

“We lost it in the first half,” lamented Pentucket coach Dan Millard.  “The second half was pretty even.”

Three weeks ago, the two teams played to a 2-2 tie at Lynnfield.  The Sachems (7-5-3) came back to get the tie in that one and hit the crossbar on their last shot of the game.

Incoming corner kick

But that was then and this time around the home team was missing key players and there was also the excitement of it being Senior Night.

“Senior Night is awesome and it’s great for the girls but it’s easy to start flat after the celebration and that’s what happened,” said Coach Millard.  “The injuries are what they are.”

Pentucket’s three injured players include two of their top three scorers (Jacey Jennings and Annabelle Sylvanowicz) as well as senior goalie Vanessa Franco.

Anna Maria Ferrante fires the free kick that turned into a first-half goal

In the first half, Lynnfield’s Anna Maria Ferrante kicked a rebound over the net at the 23-minute mark.  A minute later she lined up a free kick from the right because of a foul on Pentucket’s Riley Roche.

Anna Maria’s free kick was high on keeper Sophia Heusser (JV call-up) and sailed in off her finger tips.

“Anna practices that shot a lot,” said Lynnfield coach Mark Vermont afterwards.  “She got a good strike on it.  It was no floater.”

“This was Sophia’s first varsity game,” explained Coach Millard.  “She hadn’t practiced with us.  That first goal was hit with speed and drive.”

Senior Emma Montanile breaks in

The Pioneers gained further separation from Pentucket with a second goal twelve minutes later. Emma Montanile dribbled in and cashed a wide-open look.

“It was set up by a nice give-and-go and a good finish by our senior,” explained Coach Vermont.

“Anna Maria (Ferrante) had the ball and she turned and got the ball to me,” recalled senior Emma Montanile.  “I tapped it in with the right side of my foot.”

Syiera Campbell (20) and Emma Nardone (8)

Pentucket’s Syiera Campbell impressed me with her speed and persistence.

Seven seniors were honored before the game…….actually eight, including Emma Montanile of Lynnfield.

I was unaware of a rain forecast.  Fortunately I had an umbrella in my car that I used to protect my camera.

The Sachems have three games left.

The Pioneers are 9-0-2 against Pentucket since 2011.

Lynnfield is unbeaten in their last six games.

Senior Tia Zanardi and sophomore Jacey Jennings were Cape Ann League All-Stars last season.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Sophia Heusser jumps for a high shot

Sarah Riter (14) and Emma Ricciardi (2)

Tia Zanardi (19) and Anna Maria Ferrante (6)

Adriana Parisi (1) and Syiera Campbell (20)

Ashley Mitchell (3) and Kinneal Dickens (12)

Emily Riter (10) about to shoot

Helen Olson (15) and Lauren Braconnier (12)

Kinneal Dickens

Looking to control

Loose ball in midfield

Mackenzie Currie set to corner kick

 

 

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Amesbury bats drop Lynnfield 13-1 in D3 North quarterfinals

Emma Catania had a 3-run homer in the first inning

Freshman Maddie DiPietro crosses home in the sixth inning with the game-ending run

(Amesbury MA) Amesbury coach Jacqui Water told me after today’s game that her team had done a lot of extra hitting lately.

That information might help explain the hitting barrage the Indians unleashed on Lynnfield during a 13-1 mercy-ending D3 North quarterfinals game on sunny Tuesday afternoon.

The game ended in the Amesbury 6th when the Indians took a twelve-run lead.

Today’s tournament contest got away from the Pioneers early.  Amesbury had ten runs on ten hits after just two innings.

Unfortunately, for Lynnfield, their hitting was held in check by senior Hayley Catania.  Hayley allowed only four hits and struck out nine batters.  During one section of the game she retired eight in a row.

The Indians season continues as they advance to the D3 north semis on Thursday (3:30PM) at Martin Field in Lowell against St. Mary’s.

On May 2nd the Pioneers had rallied with three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to defeat Amesbury, 7-6, at Lynnfield.

Hayley Catania pitched a 4-hitter with nine strikeouts

Coach Waters remembered it: “I wasn’t comfortable with our lead today because of it.”

LHS coach Paul Marinelli said that his defense was partly responsible for today’s bad start: “We gave away too many things in the beginning.  We got in a hole as a result and couldn’t get out.”

The Pioneers best scoring chance was in the sixth when they loaded the bases with two outs.  Hayley Catania, however, struck out Jillian Babine to end that threat.

Stranded baserunners were rare for Amesbury.  They stranded just three in six innings.

The Indians had homers in each of the first three innings.  Sophomore Emma Catania hit her HR into the gap in left center in the first.  Freshman Julia Campbell hit an opposite field liner that lasered past RF Gabby Langone in the second.  Senior Hayley Catania also hit into the left-center gap and the ball rolled nearly to the stadium wall in the third inning.

Hayley would also round the bases in the second inning when her hard-hit single to left went through LF Allie Wing.  The Pioneers were quick to retrieve the ball and Hayley had to slide into home to score.

Freshman Chloe Shapleigh homered in the 3rd inning

A while ago the Indians celebrated Seniors Day at their last home game.  I assumed that Amesbury (14-8) wouldn’t have any tournament home games.  So I asked senior Hayley Catania about her favorite memories of Perry Field after the Senior’s game.

Not so fast! The #11 Amesbury won their tourney opener over Shawsheen on the road and #14 Lynnfield did the same with O’Bryant.  That brought the quarterfinals game back to Amesbury today.  Today I was certain that Hayley won’t be playing on Perry Field again when we talked after the game.  “It was a nice last game here today – to hit well and pitch well,” said Hayley afterwards.

LHS freshman Chloe Shapleigh had one of those good and not-so-good games.  The good?  Chloe was the Pioneers’ leadoff batter and went three-for-three including a long homer to right.  Chloe’s teammates had only one hit among them.

The not-so-good?  The LHS shortstop had four errors by my count.  One was on a bobbled grounder but the other three were on throws, two of them to first base.  The other throw was an attempted flip toss to third in the sixth inning that went over 3B Jillian Babine’s head and allowed Maddy DiPietro to score the game-ending run.  I strongly suspect that Chloe’s defense will improve and will combine with her good hitting to impress Cape Ann League teams over the next three seasons.

Julia Campbell celebrates her home run in the second inning

One of Amesbury’s best shortstops (Maddie Napoli) was home from college and in the house today.

Emma Catania drove in four runs for Amesbury.

Meg McElaney and Hayley Catania each collected three hits for the Indians.  Hayley also scored three runs.

Coach Waters had good words for seniors Hannaih Burdick and Hayley Catania: “Sometimes you lose the seniors after they graduate, and the season is still going on.  These two have kept the team going.”

Senior Hayley O’Brien

Hayley Catania: “My drop curve was working well today.  When they loaded the bases (6th inning) I had to focus a little more.”

Coach Marinelli: “We graduate one senior (pitcher Hayley O’Brien) so we should be good next year. Amesbury has always been a good team and I would rather play them than some of the Boston teams in the tournament.”

Hayley O’Brien will be attending Fitchburg State next year and expects to play softball there.

A little windy at times today but the temperature made for a pleasant afternoon.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Hayley Catania slides under the tag of Allie Wing

Meg McElaney scores the 10th Amesbury run

Taylor Tringali

Hayley Catania homered in the third inning

Breanna Serabian

Shortstop Emma DiPietro snags a line drive

Play at second

Shortstop Chloe Shapleigh throws to first

Emma DiPietro

Shortstop Chloe Shapleigh flips toward third base.

Hayley O’Brien

Emma DiPietro leads off the game with an infield hit

Reilly Ganter

RF Gabby Langone

Shortstop Chloe Shapleigh sets to tag out Emma DiPietro

 

 

 

 

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