Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Recap: Coyle clinches EAC baseball crown
By Tom Layman
TAUNTON, Mass. — Bishop Stang’s quick strike in the top of the first inning didn’t waver the confidence of Coyle-Cassidy head coach Ken Lalli.
He has preached patience with his group this season and the five years that he’s been at the helm, and ultimately he knew that this group of Warriors would be able to grind out a victory. The Warriors battled back from a three-run deficit in the first inning to grab their first Eastern Athletic Conference regular season title since 2003 with a 6-3 win at home over their bitter rivals.
The gameplan, which has netted the Warriors a 15-2 record, worked out just find for Lalli and company.
“I had complete confidence, because our game plan is to try and wear teams down and hit them hard in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings,” said Lalli, whose team is 7-0 in conference play with one game left to go. “I knew that we would come around and do that. Things weren’t going or way and they weren’t really taking it to us. They had a lot of crazy plays, but I had complete confidence in Mac that he would just keep throwing and had complete confidence in our team to put the runs on the board.”
Lalli was able to live with the Warriors ugly start in the field, which featured two errors and three runs by the Spartans. The Spartans only had one truly hard-hit ball in the inning as two runs came on a fielding error in centerfield and a botched pickoff play with men at first and third brought home Logan Sullo for a 3-0 lead.
Mac Stays the Course: Things could have gotten out of hand for Mac Curran in the first. Instead, the big left-hander buckled down to go the distance and not allow another run in his final six innings of work.
Curran lived around the plate with 81 of his 97 pitches going for strikes. He struck out seven and scattered eight hits — four of those being infield hits — while walking none for the complete-game victory.
“You just got to keep fighting,” said Curran when asked how he was able to put the first quarter behind him. “Our goal is a championship...It came together today when I had to.”
“He keeps his composure no matter what and keeps working hard,” added Lalli. “That’s what he’s been doing for us all season.”
The Spartans only put four men on in the final five innings and couldn’t keep a rally going long enough with the game being one of a one-run variety until a couple of late runs by the Warriors.
“We had some runners on base and we got the big hit in the first inning, but we couldn’t get it later on,” said Bishop Stang head coach Jason Pacheco, whose team lost 14-1 to the Warriors in the first outing.