- Scott Barboza, ESPN Staff Writer
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BOSTON – Justin Peluso’s game-winning hit almost never was.
In the top of the 10th inning, he dug into the box with a man on first and nobody out with No. 3 St. John’s Prep and No. 7 BC High tied, 3-3. Peluso got a bunt sign from coach Pat Yanchus. After working the count to 1-1, Peluso wasn’t looking to advance the runner. He was looking to end the game.
“I had two hits and I was feeling pretty confident,” Peluso said. “So I said, ‘Coach, let me hit.’”
Peluso delivered, ripping an RBI triple down the third base line and scoring Anthony Capuano from first. Prep held on to take a 5-3 win over BC High, meaning the teams will share the Catholic Conference title this season.
BC High (11-6, 5-3 Catholic Conference) came out swinging against Prep starter Pat Connaughton, plating three runs against the Notre Dame commit in the first. BC High catcher Bobby Melley drove an RBI double to center before Ryan Tufts and Melley scored on passed balls.
After falling behind 3-0 in the first, Connaughton bounced back to throw seven straight scoreless innings in a no-decision before giving way to Brandon Bingle, who picked up the win with two shutout innings in relief.
“I think I just got comfortable,” Connaughton said of his in-game adjustments. “Sometimes I seem to have trouble in the first inning. I actually have to figure out why that is. After I settled down in the first inning, I felt like things were working. We got the win, that’s all that matters.”
Prep (13-5, 5-3) tied the game with a three-run third. Capuano scored the first Prep run on a Peluso single to center, rounding the bases from first after a miscue in the outfield. Prep scratched across another unearned run against BC High’s Neal Horan on Dillon Gonzalez’s fielder’s choice before catcher Jake Bedrosian drove in Connaughton with an RBI single.
Neither team found the go-ahead run, even after Prep had the bases loaded with no outs to start the eighth.
That all changed in the 10th when Peluso took matters into his own hands.
Sean Patrikas added a sac fly for Prep’s fifth run.