Boston High School: Chuckie Connors

Legion District 10 announces award winners

September, 24, 2012
9/24/12
10:45
PM ET
District 10 American Legion Baseball announced its postseason All-District Team over the weekend, as well as the establishment of postseason awards. Barnstable Post 206 manager Sean Walsh passes along the postseason accolades for what was a successful summer for the district:

MVP - Dylan Morris, Barnstable Post 206
44 hits (team record), .488 BA, .586 OBP, 37 runs, 22 RBI, 22 BB, 14 SB

Pitcher of the Year - Keegan Dellacona, Barnstable Post 206
7-0, 52.2 IP, 70 K, 15 BB, 0.79 ERA

Umpire of the Year - Peter Marciano

Coach of the Year - Sean Walsh, Barnstable Post 206

1st Team All-District Team

Rockland Post 147:
1B - John Mulready
RHP-SS - Brody Loughlin
RHP-SS – Sean Roache

Hingham Post 120:
RHP/3B - Sean Greene
SS - Chuckie Connors
1B - Eddie Bowler

Plymouth Post 40:
RHP -- Alex Rozak
SS -- David Murphy
3B -- Mark Mineo

Marshfield Post 88:
LHP – Kevin Kwedor
SS – Brett Morgan
3B – Mark Pomella

Sandwich Post 188:
3B/RHP – Bobby Bray
OF – Michael Pratt

Kingston Post 387:
RHP - Mike Lundin
SS - Matt Woodman
LHP - Zach Schindler

Bridgewater Post 203:
CF - Mike Muir
1B/DH - Matt Rubino
RHP - Cody Medairos

Orleans Post 308:
RHP-3B-1B - Nick Taber
LHP-1B - Wes Brown
RF - Joey Ogden

Whitman Post 22:
1B - Chris Adams

Brockton Post 35:
3B - George Bradshaw
RF - Joel Woodbridge
LHP - David Tarr

Duxbury Post 223:
C - Brian Hocking

Pembroke Post 143:
P - Luke Nagle

Barnstable Post 206:
CF – Dylan Morris
RHP – Keegan Dellacona
2B – Mark Brodd
DH – Alex Pernick
RHP – George Bent

Hawkeye Athletic Club:
1B - Nicholas Cogliano
RHP - Zac Cooney

Middleboro Post 64:
RF-1B-LHP - Patrick Nicholson

Wareham Post 220:
P - Matt Beatty
SS/3B - Jimmy Gamache
2B/Utility - Billy Peterson

Recap: No. 13 Lowell 4, No. 7 BC High 2

May, 18, 2012
5/18/12
11:35
PM ET



LOWELL, Mass. -- It is a known fact that big-time pitchers are usually at their best in big-game situations.

Lowell High’s Matt Tulley certainly falls into that classification of big-time pitcher. Tonight the senior righty showed why, as he surrendered just four hits while striking out 11 in a complete game 4-2 non-league victory effort over BC High at Alumni Field.

“I knew this was the most-anticipated game of the year for us,” said Tulley, who will play for Virginia Tech next season. “I was just very excited to play. Coach (Danny) Graham told me about a pitcher from this area named Jeff Allison (who played at Peabody High and was a first-round pick of the Florida Marlins) and how gritty a player he was and I just tried to follow that.

"Warming up in the bullpen I didn't feel that good. I don't know what it was but I wasn't to worried about it. I just knew I had to zone in more and get focused. Once I got out there I felt great.”

Tulley mixed his fastball and cutter with a knee-buckling curve, which proved to be his most effective pitch of the evening as it kept Eagles (13-5) off-balanced throughout.

“We had chances but let to many opportunities go by,” BC High coach Norm Walsh said. “(Tulley) is obviously one of the top 4-5 guys we’ve seen all year. Him changing speeds on his breaking ball was the biggest thing. It wasn't so much the fastball but the ability for him to change speeds on the breaking ball. He competes. That’s what you want to see out of your pitchers -- to be aggressive and go after hitters like he did tonight.”

With the contest tied 2-2 through 5 1/2 innings, the Red Raiders (13-3) put this one to rest in their half of the sixth. With John Arens in relief of starter Trent Berg (5 IP, 2 runs, 7 hits, 4 Ks) on the mound, Lowell’s Roger Roman opened the frame with a single. After advancing to second on Matt Cassella’s well-executed sacrifice bunt, the senior eventually came around to score the go-ahead run on a Chad Gens fielder’s choice. The Red Raiders added another run moments later on a Tulley (2 hits, 2 RBI) single to left that scored Mike Hart, who walked.

“We knew it was going to be a good game,” Graham said. “It was a great performance by Matt, and he was very gutsy right to the end. Credit our kids. This one was fun to watch. (BC High) is a helluva team and they compete hard. You could see at the end of the game how meaningful it was to beat a program like BC High. Anytime you win it’s great but when you beat a quality team it’s even better. Our kids were definitely up for the challenge.”

The Red Raiders looked to put this contest away in their half of the first after loading the bases with no out. But Berg, who also used his 12-to-6 curveball with authority, pitched his way out of trouble by striking out Tulley and R.J. Noel before inducing Derek Reed to fly out. Walking the proverbial tightrope much of the evening, Berg, a junior, failed to escape trouble in the third.

Back-to-back singles by R.J. Gray and Gens started things. A Tulley sacrifice bunt moved both runners into scoring position. After Berg set Noel with a strike out, Reed next singled to plate Gray with Lowell’s first run.

The Eagles tied it up in the fifth. Rich Roach opened with a double to left, took third on a deep fly out by Chuckie Connors and sprinted home on a wild pitch. Lowell got that run back its half of the fifth. Gens singled, stole second and came around to score on Tulley’s double down the left field line which short-hopped over the glove of third baseman Justin Silvestro making it 2-1.

Showing great resiliency, the Eagles answered back to begin the sixth. Bobby Melley blasted a triple to right and scored moments later on a passed ball to deadlock this tilt yet again, 2-2.

But on this night, the Red Raiders simply had too much firepower offensively and it showed in the bottom of the frame after taking a two-run advantage. With Tulley in full command on the hill, that would prove to be more than enough run support for him to secure the win.

“We put some pressure on them,” said Walsh. “When we kept it on them we scored but we just didn’t get it done as often as we needed to do it.”

Recap: No. 4 St. John's (S) 5, No. 1 BC High 2

May, 11, 2012
5/11/12
11:23
PM ET
SHREWSBURY, Mass. -- Although they never displayed it openly, you knew to a player that St. John’s had Friday’s return match against BC High circled several times on its calendar.

The Pioneers were beaten handedly by the Eagles in Dorchester last month and were chomping at for a redemption shot. Jumping out to a 3-0 lead after one inning, St. John’s did precisely what it set out the do having turned the tables en route to a 5-2 non-league victory at Pioneer Field.

“We have taken every team we've played just as serious as this game today,” said Pioneer third baseman Owen Shea, who contributed a pair of RBIs in the victory. “Yesterday after our game against Burncoat, we talked and made sure that all of us were ready for this one today. We came out hard early and managed to get the win. It's great.”

With Advanced Placement testing taking place this week, BC High coach Norm Walsh did not have a full unit to begin the game. Those players who were testing arrived just before first pitch. That being the case, Walsh had to maneuver his lineup some and had to use a junior varsity pitcher (Sam Telman) on the hill.

St. John’s (14-2) wasted little time getting to Telman, a righty. Tom Petry led off the Pioneer first with a double. Two outs later, Shea followed with a wind-blown double to right scoring Petry. Shea took third on the play after Eagle third baseman Justin Silvestro, taking the cutoff throw, fired home trying to nail Petry but the ball sailed on catcher Bobby Melley hitting the backstop. Moments later Scott Manea belted a double to center plating Shea with the Pioneers’ second run.

Telman woes would continue. Following Manea's hit, Jake Byrne next smacked a single to left scoring Manea with St. John’s third run.

“They took advantage of my JV guy,” said Walsh, his club falling to 12-3. “We could have bailed him out I think with some better play in the outfield. It was tough, wind conditions today and the balls were hit pretty hard. Them scoring three in the first was certainly the difference today.”

Pioneer starter Ben White, despite playing with a stomach virus, was holding the Eagles in check over the first three frames, issuing no hits. But in the fourth, BC High (which defeated the Pioneers 11-5 three weeks ago for St. John's last loss) started to make some noise against the junior righthander.

With one out, Chuckie Connors reached on a Petry error at shortstop. White then struck out Silvestro but couldn’t escape the power of Brian Hocking. The senior roped an 0-1 pitch over the left field fence to bring the Eagles back to within a run. Following the blast, BC High proceeded to load the bases but White (4-0) avoided further damage by striking out Rich Roach.

Following the gutty fourth, White’s day was done. Senior Anthony Perry took over and it was up to him to maintain the lead. The lefty pitched was flawless in his three innings of work, surrendering just one hit.

In between, St. John’s was able to tack on a couple of more runs on Perry's behalf. In the fifth, consecutive singles by Jimmy Smith, Nick Sieber and Shea produced the Pioneers’ fourth run. In the sixth they added one more on a Micah Cummins home run off of reliever Bartley Regan.

“Scoring early really helped us,” St. John’s coach Charlie Eppinger said. “We know BC High has an amazing lineup and I give Ben White and Anthony Perry a tremendous amount of credit. Our catcher Scott Manea called a great game and kept their hitter off-balanced throughout. Our kids really wanted this one today. It’s a great win against a great, well-coached program.”

Recap: No. 4 BC High 6, No. 6 Xaverian 5

April, 25, 2012
4/25/12
11:14
PM ET
BOSTON — Justin Silvestro admittedly hasn’t been swinging the bat the way he would like in the early part of this season for BC High.

This just might snap him out of his funk.

The senior first basemen collected four hits and came through with a walkoff single in the bottom of the ninth inning to soar the Eagles (8-1) over Xaverian with a 6-5 victory in a big Catholic Conference tilt.

Silvestro flew out to center in his first at-bat to end the first, but in his final four at-bats he went: single, double, single, single, with two RBI.

“I’ve been pulling out on the ball and trying to over swing a little bit,” said Silvestro. “This is a game that can really test staying down on the ball and not dipping your back shoulder and trying to hit everything out of the park. It’s about hitting line drives and I think this will help me.”

Silvestro showed off his new swing thought to perfection in his final at-bat with the sun slowly fading and Game 7 inching ever closer. With Chuck Connors on second with one out in the ninth, Silvestro lined a 1-1 pitch into right-center on a rope to easily score his teammate for the victory.

“He started me off with a fastball high and I over swung because I was trying to end the game,” said Silvestro. “He came back with a curveball (on the next pitch) and after that I knew a fastball was coming. I just tried to get a base hit and hit it hard.”

The Eagles have a 3-4-5 combination as dangerous as anyone in the area — with Bobby Melly, Connors and Silvestro — and Norm Walsh is happy to see that trio starting to get into a nice flow offensively.

“Silvestro is starting to come around, because he was struggling at the beginning of the year,” said Walsh. “It was really good to see. He’s been working hard the last week or so to make some changes in his swing, and it’s starting to pay off.

Connors Gets Redemption: The Eagles were a couple of inches from coming into this game with an undefeated mark, but Connors was robbed on a hard-hit ball up the middle by Lincoln-Sudbury’s Dylan DeFlorio last time out.

Connors, the Eagles' four-hole hitter came through this time with an RBI single in the seventh inning to make sure this game would go to extras. Connors was 4-for-5 with three singles and a double. He scored three runs, including the game-winner.

“He’s been really swinging the bat,” said Walsh. “His average doesn’t reflect it, but he’s been hitting the ball hard consistently.”

Play For The One-Run Game: Gerry Lambert has been in so many tightly contested Catholic Conference games that he knew every run could be crucial.

In the bottom of the third with a 3-1 lead the Hawks (5-4) took a chance with a man on third.

Mike LaVita was caught in no-mans land on an attempted suicide squeeze after Tyler Campo couldn’t get wood on the ball, and LaVita was tagged out in a pickle to erase the threat.

“I’m a broken record and it’s true, these (Catholic Conference) games are nip-and-tuck games,” said Lambert. “That’s what they are. They always are. Every single run is going to matter, whether it’s a close play at first or a close pitch, or a play we almost execute. It comes down to a lot of those close plays.

Recap: No. 13 L-S 8, No. 1 BC High 7

April, 21, 2012
4/21/12
4:49
PM ET
BOSTON -- Dylan DeFlorio reacted physically like he knew exactly what was coming.

Mentally might have been a different story.

The Lincoln-Sudbury second baseman made a game-saving diving catch on a hard-hit ball up the middle to record the final out of the Warriors 8-7 victory over host No. 1 BC High on Saturday. The Eagles (7-1) had the bases loaded with two outs chasing a run in the bottom of the seventh. The line drive struck by Chuckie Connors most likely would have brought in a walkoff win for the hosts, but DeFlorio stretched out and snared the hot shot to hand the hosts their first loss of the season.

“I don’t remember anything,” DeFlorio said with a laugh. “I just remember looking at my glove and I had the ball in it.”

Alex Weiland got the first two outs of the inning in the bottom of the seventh, but the veteran Eagles lineup started to get to the sophomore on their last leg. Jake Marotta reached on a single and Rich Roach got on for the fifth time when he was plunked with a Weiland pitch.

Ryan Tufts hit a deep grounder to short and Marotta came around to score when the shortstop made an off-balanced throw to third in an effort to get the Eagles’ baserunner at home plate. Bobby Melley was walked on four pitches to set up a force at any base, and on a 2-0 pitch, DeFlorio bailed out his team with the defensive play of the young season for the Warriors.

“He made a play that we were able to celebrate,” said Warriors head coach Kirk Fredericks. “So that was good.”

PRESSURE, PRESSURE, PRESSURE
It’s not secret that Fredericks is still searching for the combination of young pitchers who can come in a throw strikes against teams that the Warriors (4-1) will most likely see later in the season.

Weiland is starting to show that he belongs in the mix.

The sophomore came in relief in the fifth inning and was able to strand a runner at second with the Warriors up a run at the time. In the bottom of the sixth, Connors found his way on third base with an out, but again Weiland buckled down to get two fly balls to right field to sneak his way out of trouble.

“That’s the second time he’s been in a pressure situation [this season],” Fredericks said. “For him to be able to throw strikes that’s giving us some guys that we can compete with.”

QUICK START NOT SUSTAINED
The Eagles looked like they would run away with this game in the first inning after battering the Warriors for five runs on five hits.

But the offense sputtered in some key situations later in the game. After posting a run in the third inning, the Eagles left the bases loaded with a chance to bury the Warriors already up 6-2, and missed out on another bases loaded chance before DeFlorio flashed some leather.

“A couple of games we sustained it, but we haven’t been able to maintain our focus at the plate,” Eagles head coach Norm Walsh said. “We still got a ways to go, but we can be a really good team.”

Roundtable: Is Milford the new D1 softball favorite?

April, 20, 2012
4/20/12
11:34
AM ET
In this week's edition of "Roundtable", ESPN Boston High Schools Editors Scott Barboza and Brendan Hall are joined by correspondent Bruce Lerch and Brockton Enterprise staff writer John Botelho as we discuss the best hitting lineups, the best faceoff specialist in lacrosse, and whether Milford is now the team to beat in softball.

1. AFTER BEATING KING PHILIP, IS MILFORD THE FAVORITE IN DIVISION 1 FOR SOFTBALL?

ESPN Boston High Schools Editor Scott Barboza: In a word, yes. Shannon Smith is simply pitching out of her mind right now, but it's not as though we haven't seen this before from the University of Kentucky commit. Two years ago, Smith was named Massachusetts Gatorade Player of the Year after recording a 0.36 ERA. This year, she's been dominant, including a 20-strikeout performance against Shrewsbury and 17 K's against KP. Not to mention, the Scarlet Hawks haven't even been playing with their opening day lineup, after All-State catcher Taylor Archer suffered a leg injury in the first week of the season. Freshman Taylor LeBrun has done a terrific job behind the plate in the interim, but MIlford will only be that much more potent with their top battery in place. I'm certainly not ruling out KP, as anything short of a rematch between the two teams in the state final would be unexpected.

Bruce Lerch, correspondent: While there are several teams with good enough pitching to shut down the Scarlet Hawks bats, how many are strong enough offensively to hit against Milford ace Shannon Smith? The only team that really comes to mind is...King Philip. The Kentucky-bound Smith two-hit the Warriors and struck out 17 Monday afternoon, so you have to think they are the lead horse in the race right now. KP has hit Smith before, however, as a 10-1 result in the state championship game two years ago proves. Of course, Smith was but a freshman then, and having faced King Philip several times since then her knowledge of that dangerous lineup has grown considerably.

Oh yeah...KP also has Meghan Rico. I've heard she's a pretty good pitcher too...something about a reigning player of the year? If both aces are on their game, then the state championship softball game may have to be scheduled for more than one day

John Botelho, Brockton Enterprise: Even with Milford knocking off K-P, it's still hard to call anyone but the Warriors - the two-time defending state champ - the favorite to win it all. This means Milford might have closed the gap, but until someone proves Meghan Rico is possible to beat in the playoffs, the Warriors remain the class of softball in this state. Keep in mind how difficult it is to beat a good team twice, and chances are Milford will have to do just that if they're to bring home the state crown.

2. SEVEN OF THE EIGHT TEAMS PARTICIPATING IN THE COACHES CHALLENGE CUP THIS WEEK ARE RANKED IN OUR TOP 25. WHICH OF THOSE TEAMS HAS THE BEST CHANCE OF WINNING A STATE TITLE IN THEIR RESPECTIVE DIVISION?

Scott Barboza: We might have seen a Division 2 Eastern Mass final matchup preview on Thursday when Concord-Carlisle and Hingham squared off in a Coaches Challenge Cup semifinal. The Patriots beat the Harbormen, 9-4, with Jackson Finigan, Tim Badgley and Kevin Delehey scoring two goals each. If both teams take care of business hereon out, we should expect to see both of them at Harvard Stadium. Of course, none of this makes mention of Dover-Sherborn. The Raiders fell just short of an upset over Lincoln-Sudbury before falling, 12-11, but they've proven their among the elite in Division 3.

Bruce Lerch: That team would Dover-Sherborn. Lincoln-Sudbury will enter the Division 1 tournament as one of the teams best suited to make a run at Duxbury, but betting against the Dragons has been mostly a losing proposition for the past decade. The six Div. 2 teams that participated in the tournament are perennially among the last teams standing in June, so while a state champion could come from this group, picking who it will be requires a crystal ball.

Dover-Sherborn has the talent to compete with the best teams in the state, something the Raiders proved three years running now at the Coaches Challenge Cup, and is likely going to snag one of the top four seeds in the Div. 3 tourney and will be included in the group of favorites that should also include Weston and Norwell.

3. IN BASEBALL, WHAT'S THE BEST HITTING YOU'VE SEEN SO FAR?

ESPN Boston High Schools Editor Brendan Hall: I have seen both BC High and Lowell multiple times, and I don't think you can go wrong either way.

BC High can mash 1 through 9, but at the top is where they're especially dangerous. UConn signee Bob Melley is the Eagles' most powerful bat out of the No. 3 spot, but he's surrounded by plenty of college-ready talent in seniors Chuckie Connors, Justin Silvestro, Brian Hocking, and juniors Ryan Tufts and Dan Dougherty. I will put the Eagles' top six hitters against any team's top six in the state...

...Unless that top six is Lowell. The Red Raiders are only going to get stronger as the season goes on, but they're showing some real nice stuff through the first three weeks of the season. Rory O'Connor, Derek Reed and Andrew Marasa form what is regarded as the state's best outfield, but they can manufacture runs from the plate, too. Matt Tulley is headed to Virginia Tech for his low-90's fastball, but he's got a heavy swing from the cleanup spot too. My favorite hitter to watch in this lineup is senior Chad Gens, who can square up and plant it deep as good as anyone. After Lexington's Chris Shaw, he might be one of the better power hitters in Eastern Mass. I expect him to be near the top in extra base hits this year.

Also of note, take a look at Dighton-Rehoboth, which comes in this week at No. 18 this week. With a top of the order led by Bryan Rocha, Adam Benvie, Evan Mondor and Mike St. John, the Falcons are averaging 11 runs per game, including shellackings over Somerset (22-0) and Case (17-6). When it comes to manufacturing runs, you can't forget Walpole, between leadoff shortstop Johnny Adams, catcher Dan King, and brothers Cam and Craig Hanley.

John Botelho: Despite getting shutout by Marshfield for their first loss of the season on Thursday, the East Bridgewater Vikings offense is certainly among the best in southeastern Mass, and could be the class of the D3 South Sectional later this season. Even with the setback against the Rams, E-B is still averaging just over 10 runs per game.

In the Hockomock League both Oliver Ames has emerged as a team with an electric pitching staff, but the offense is plenty capable of flexing muscle too. With sweet swinging David MacKinnon - whose emerging as one of the best hitters in the Hock - hitting third and powerful Matt Harding hitting fourth, the Tigers have one of the best 3-4 combos going. Matt Mancini, Ryan O'Shea, Mike McMillan and Jim Sullivan help bolster a lineup that features plenty of hitting ability.

4. AN UNDERRATED ASPECT OF LACROSSE IS THE "FOGO" (FACE OFF, GET OFF) POSITION. WHO IS THE BEST FACEOFF SPECIALIST IN THE MIAA?

Scott Barboza: I think there's no doubt that Clay Richard of Medfield is the best true FOGO in the state, but as we saw during Wednesday's matchup against No. 1 Duxbury, Dragons midfielder Henry Narlee might be the best faceoff man in the state. Sqauring off against Richard and the Warriors, Narlee won an amazing 21 of 28 draws.

Bruce Lerch: The two best were on display Wednesday night in Duxbury as Medfield's Clay Richard went to work against the Dragons Henry Narlee. Richard more than held his own against Narlee in their individual battle, but in addition to the Duxbury junior's elite skill, he also has the advantage of having James Burke and Reilly Naton flying off the wings to grab every loose ball in sight. Not only is Narlee at winning the draws to himself, but is deadly accurate when shooting the ball into space for his two LSM's to chase it down.

5. LOOK AT THE NEXT TWO WEEKS OF SPRING. CALL AN UPSET. AND FEEL FREE TO GO BIG.

Scott Barboza: Don't really know if this would count as such, but I'm calling Duxbury's take down of Garden City (N.Y.) this weekend. Looks like the Dragons' regained their top form in the last week. In softball, I have a feeling about Hudson taking down Shrewsbury this weekend.

Brendan Hall: Boston Latin has a two-game swing at the beginning of next month that could have big implications in the Dual County League: May 4 at Lincoln-Sudbury, and May 7 at Acton-Boxborough. The Wolfpack seem to be everyone's favorite little underdog in the league (no pun intended), but I wouldn't be surprised to see them take one of two here. L-S has some talent, but has been searching for that staff ace; meanwhile A-B has had a knack for the dramatic so far, twice winning one-run games, the latest a 1-0 decision over Waltham on Wednesday. Can Latin pull 1 of 2 here? It might depend on who's pitching.

Elsewhere, I've got May 10's matchup between No. 14 Burncoat and No. 3 St. John's of Shrewsbury circled on the calendar. The Patriots just lost their first game to Danvers the other day, while St. John's sits at 7-0 with a nice win over St. John's Prep. This is building into one of the best regular-season matchups in Central Mass., but I'm going to go with Burncoat in the upset.

John Botelho: On April 26, when No. 16 Barnstable comes to town, Bridgewater-Raynham will take a big step toward winning the Old Colony League by knocking them off in a pitcher's duel. The Trojans have to deal with league foe Dartmouth just two days before, and if the rotation stays the path it's on lefty Pat Chalmers will be throwing that game. That means fellow southpaw Shane Holmes, who has been piling up strikeouts and shutting offenses down, will take the mound against the Red Raiders. The lefty is one of the toughest in the area and B-R could come away with this one without needing much in the way of run support.

Recap: No. 1 BC High 5, No. 14 Chelmsford 1

April, 7, 2012
4/07/12
3:46
PM ET
DORCHESTER, Mass. -- With a number of quality arms graduated from last year's squad, BC High's No. 1 preseason ranking in ESPN Boston's statewide poll is largely predicated on the number of live bats returning to the lineup. But if the performance this morning by senior righthander Johnny Arens is any indicator of the staff's quality, the Eagles might be OK in that department too.

Arens, a Milton resident, threw just four innings with the varsity last year. It wasn't a perfect outing for him, but he threw mostly fastballs, retiring the first 12 batters in succession -- including the first six all by way of fly-out -- en routed to a one-hitter in five innings of work. He fanned four batters and walked three, and managed to get out of a bases-loaded, no-outs jam in the top of the fifth inning to preserve a 2-0 lead.

After that, senior second baseman Chuckie Connors put on the finishing touches of what was a 5-1 win, lining a frozen rope to centerfield in the bottom of the sixth for a two-run single, the final runs of the game.

"I don't think he walked anybody until the fifth," Eagles head coach Norm Walsh said of Arens. "When I talked to him the other day, I said 'Don't walk anybody, and we'll be in good shape', because overall we're going to play good defense. So I was very pleased with that for him. He needed a good start."

"It felt good," Arens said softly. "I was a little off, but the defense definitely got it done."

The operative word there is defense. The Eagles (2-0) boast one of the state's best middle infields, and the leather was on display in the middle innings.

Arens walked the first two batters of the top of the fifth and then -- working from the stretch -- surrendered a Mason Trubey line drive single to center to load up the bases with no outs. Walsh sense discomfort from his starting pitcher working from the windup, instructed him to go back to the wind-up, and the results were much more favorable. Arens rung up Jake Kelley swinging, then Connor Barry hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning and preserve the lead over the Lions (1-1).

Battling for Bases: The bottom of the fourth was a good demonstration in run production for the Eagles.

Up 1-0 in the bottom of the fourth, BC High's Chris Donovan manufactured a run with the benefit of two throwing errors by Chelmsford on pickoffs. After the first pickoff error that sent Donovan to second, Walsh called for a timeout, went out to meet Donovan and told him to beware of a wheel play the Lions might run.

After taking another bag on a pickoff error, he was sent home by a Ryan Tufts sacrifice fly to left field. Tufts initially went down 0-2 in the count to righty Tanner Houle, but battled back to a full count, fouling off two pitches before getting under a 3-2 curveball to complete the eight-pitch at bat

"I went up there taking first strike, and then I went behind," Tufts said. "I knew [with] a two-strike approach, you just try to protect and hit the ball into play."

Running on Rabbito: Chelmsford junior catcher Matt Rabbito has one of the best arms from behind the plate in the Merrimack Valley Conference, but the Eagles were not afraid to test it. They made three attempts to steal second, finding success twice.

"You don't run on the catcher -- you run on the pitchers," Walsh said. "We were looking for certain things in certain situations from pitchers, rather than so much for the catcher. Obviously if he can't throw, then yes, but we knew he could throw. So we're keying much more off the pitchers than we are off the catcher, and then count situation and you know, you're looking for off-speed, stuff like that to run on."

Hill hurt: Chelmsford third baseman Derek Hill left the game in the third inning with a knee injury, and was replaced by Barry. Head coach Mike O'Keefe didn't yet know the extent of the injury, or timetable, after the game.

"It looks like he twisted his knee, seemed pretty stiff, so we'll re-evaluate that when we get back," O'Keefe said. "Hopefully he's going to be OK. I saw something was wrong. I should have called a timeout and let the guy know I wasn't realy going to see my pitcher, I knew something was wrong with him. But hopefully he'll be fine."

Bay State Games: Day 2 Recap

July, 6, 2011
7/06/11
10:41
PM ET
Courtesy Bay State Games media relations director Peter Cohenno:

BASEBALL
Bentley University – Waltham, MA

Northeast 8, Metro 5

Northeast opened the first inning with four quick runs and hung onto their early lead, going on to defeat Metro by an 8-5 margin.

Metro scored once in the first inning, followed by scoreless second and third innings for both squads. Northeast answered in the fourth inning, with a double by sophomore second baseman Riley Warnock (North Reading, North Reading HS), who stole third base as well. Junior catcher Brendon Canavan (Carlisle, Concord Carlisle) and junior shortstop Jenssy Troncoso (Salem, Salem HS) both crossed the plate, increasing the lead to 6-1.

Metro kept working to battle back in the fourth inning with another sole unearned run scored by junior second baseman Adam Lucey (Malden, Malden HS).

The squads traded two runs each in the fifth inning. Northeast earned its runs on a series of three singles by junior Hector Perez (Lawrence, Lawrence HS), junior first baseman Sean Glabicky (Peabody, Malden Catholic), and junior catcher Brendon Canavan (Carlisle, Concord Carlisle). Metro answered with a single by sophomore catcher Jake Porrazzo (Medford, Malden Catholic) and an unearned run by junior catcher Connor Murray (Lexington, Lexington HS).

Metro held Northeast scoreless through the sixth. Metro’s junior first baseman Robert Wesoloski (Arlington, Arlington Catholic) singled up the middle during the bottom of the sixth, going on to earn Metro’s fourth run of the game. However, it wasn’t enough to overtake Northeast’s commanding lead.

Northeast pitcher, sophomore Scott Tully (Reading, Reading HS), picked up the win, allowing four runs in as many innings, and striking out four batters. He was buoyed by closer junior Ben Panunzio (Middleton, Masconomet Reg. HS), who allowed one run and struck out one in the final two innings.

Southeast 7, Central 6

Junior second baseman Chuckie Connors (Hingham, Boston College HS) went 3-for-3 with a walk, RBI and two runs scored and helped ignite a comeback in the bottom of the sixth inning that lifted Southeast over Central, 7-6.

Southeast scored four runs in the first two innings to take control of the game, 4-0. In the first, batting in the leadoff spot, Connors walked and then came around to score on a double by junior first baseman Phil Sciretta (Duxbury, Nobles and Greenough). With two outs, sophomore leftfielder Cameron Hanley (Walpole, Walpole HS) singled up the middle to drive in Sciretta and junior designated hitter Will Cousins (Medfield, Medfield HS) followed with a base hit to score Hanley. Southeast tacked on an unearned run in the second.

Central took a big bite out of the deficit in the fourth with three runs. After a pair of walks, junior designated hitter Andrew Montiverdi (Worcester, Worcester Tech HS) singled to right center to push home junior catcher Daniel Whigham (Barre, Quabbin Reg HS). With two outs, junior right fielder Thomas Paine (Upton, Nipmuc Reg HS) singled to right to drive in Montiverdi and junior third baseman Sam Ashline (Clinton, Nashoba Reg HS).

Southeast added a buffer with a run in the fifth to make it 5-3. Junior designated hitter Sean Greene (Hingham, Hingham HS) tripled to left center to drive in junior leftfielder Jake Petruzzelli (Abington, South Shore Voc Tech HS).

Despite trailing the entire game, Central battled back to snatch the lead, 6-5, in the sixth inning. After a double by junior designated hitter Matt Leahey (Rutland, Wachusett Reg HS) put runners on second and third, sophomore first baseman Zackary Tower (Auburn, Auburn HS) doubled to right center to knock in both runners. A costly error with two outs allowed Tower to come around to put Central on top.

Southeast recaptured the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth. Junior centerfielder Nick Ahearn (Norfolk, Xaverian Bros HS) earned a walk to start the inning and came home on a triple by Connors to tie the game. However, Connors got cut down at home on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Adams later in the frame. After advancing on the play, Adams scored the winning run on a single to right by Sciretta, who was 2-for-4.

Junior pitcher Connor Farrell (Hopkinton, Hopkinton HS) earned the save after he was able to escape the seventh inning unscathed despite surrendering a leadoff walk.

West 10, Coastal 3

Junior centerfielder John Kinne (Great Barrington, Monument Mountain) went 2-for-4 with five RBI and two runs scored to pace the West’s offense on the way to a decisive 10-3 victory.

Coastal’s sophomore centerfielder Dan Doughtery (Pembroke, Boston College HS) tallied the first run off a ground out from sophomore first baseman Zachary Perry (Rochester, Tabor Academy). Junior shortstop Jake Salpietro (Berkley, Somerset HS) scored an unearned run after, which would prove to be Coastal’s last run until the seventh inning.

West took command of the game in the second inning when its offense was ignited by a two-run triple from Kinne. West scored four runs on four hits in the frame.

West maintained control of the game’s momentum into the third and fourth innings, scoring another six runs. Junior centerfielder John Kinne (Great Barrington, Monument Mountain) contributed to the team’s offense once again, with a three-run double to left field. Junior rightfielder Anthony Nomakeo (Westfield, Westfield HS) contributed as well, driving home Kinne.

West stretched their lead by another two runs in the fourth inning after junior first baseman Brenden Geary (South Hadley, Tabor) and junior shortstop Frank Crinella (East Longmeadow, Cathedral HS) both scored on Coastal errors.

Coastal’s offensive was quelled by a stellar performance by West junior pitcher Steve Moyers (East Longmeadow, East Longmeadow HS). He pitched the first five innings, facing 18 batters and allowing only two runs. His reliever, junior Joelfi Arias (Springfield, Central HS), finished off Coastal, allowing only one run in two innings of work.

Southeast 12, Metro 8

Southeast had five batters with multiple-hit efforts led by Walpole High School sophomores Johnny Adams (Walpole, Walpole HS), who went 4-for-5 with four runs scored, and leftfielder Cameron Hanley (Walpole, Walpole HS), who was 2-for-4 with a walk, three RBI and two runs, in a 12-8 victory over Metro.

Junior first baseman Sean Greene (Hingham, Hingham HS), junior catcher Will Cousins (Medfield, Medfield HS) and sophomore designated hitter Mark Poli (Medfield, Nobles and Greenough) each reached base three times with two hits and a walk for Southeast.

Southeast jumped out to an 11-0 advantage before Metro was able to claw back and make it interesting with two runs in the fifth and six in the bottom of the seventh.

Sophomore Andrew Dawson (Medway, Medway HS) earned the win on the hill for Southeast, going three shutout innings while allowing just one hit and fanning three.

BC High advances with 3rd win over CM

June, 7, 2011
6/07/11
12:43
AM ET


DORCHESTER, Mass. -- It was far from a perfect outing for BC High’s Donny Murray.

But it was hard for the Eagles starter to be much better while hurling a complete-game shutout against No. 5 seed Catholic Memorial in the teams’ Division 1 South quarterfinal Monday at BC High. The Knights banged out 10 hits against Murray, but they were unable to get on the scoreboard in a 3-0 Eagles’ win.

With several superb defensive plays in the field behind Murray and a couple clutch hits from the bottom of BC High’s lineup against CM ace John Gorman, the fourth-seed Eagles (16-6) claimed their third win of the season over their Catholic Conference rivals.

“Goreman’s a good pitcher and we knew it wasn’t going to be a blowout,” BC High center fielder Jack Buckley said. “We knew it wasn’t going to be a slugfest.”

Murray wiggled out of jams in both the first and second innings with a pair of deft double plays started by second baseman Chuckie Connors and shortstop Ryan Tufts.

With two on and one out in the first, Tufts made a diving stop to his left, snaring a hot shot off of Knights third baseman Matt Goreham’s bat. Tufts lunged to tag second base with his foot while firing to first in time to get Goreham and end the inning.

In the top of the second, Murray found himself in the same situation as the first. That’s when Connors started his inning-ending twin-killing by ranging to his right and grabbing a bounding ball off the bat of Paul Fahey. Connors planted off the second base bag and threw across his body to get Fahey in a close play.

“That got me going,” Murray said. “Not coming out here with my best stuff today, it was great to know I had a great defense behind me to help me through it in both innings. Chuckie [Connors] and Ryan [Tufts] made those plays and it was huge for us, huge for the team.”

The 6-foot-1 right-hander hadn’t toed the rubber since his last start, which was on May 24 against Xaverian.

Murray struck out six and walked one while throwing 122 pitches with 86 for strikes in nine innings.

“I think what hurt Donny [Murray] early was the long layoff from his last start,” Eagles head coach Norm Walsh said. “He wasn’t spotting the ball as well then. But in the later innings, he was really hitting his locations and they really weren’t making good contact at all.”

BC High got all the offense it would need in a two-run fifth. The bottom of the Eagles’ lineup came through in a big way with No. 8 hitter Buckley and Chris Casey, from the nine-hole, delivering run-scoring hits.

Buckley drilled Gorman’s 2-1 offering to shortstop. The ball bit the lip of the infield grass and exploded over the head of Knights shortstop Shane O’Leary, who could only look back in disbelief as the ball made its way into the outfield with scoring Bartley Regan from second.

Casey, the Eagles’ first baseman, followed with a resounding double to left-center with Buckley scoring all the way from first.

BC High added an insurance run in the eighth when Casey scored on a balk.

Taking a hard-luck loss, the book closed on Gorman’s illustrious high school career. The CM right-hander who’s headed to Boston College next year allowed two earned runs on four hits in eight innings while striking out seven.

The Knights end their season at 15-7 while the Eagles advance to play Franklin in the semifinals, Wednesday at 4 p.m. at Braintree High School.

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