High schools: Pittsfield baseball improves to 10-0 with doubleheader sweep of Littleton

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  • Pittsfield third baseman Gavin Bedell reacts after getting hit in the shoulder during the fourth inning of the first game against Littleton on Saturday, May 4, 2019. Bedell was part of a two-out, two run rally in the fourth after he got hit. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

  • Pittsfield third baseman Gavin Bedell reacts after getting hit in the shoulder during the fourth inning of the first game against Littleton on Saturday, May 4, 2019. Bedell was part of a two-out, two run rally in the fourth after he got hit. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

  • Littleton shortstop Austin Marquis is tagged out by Pittsfield short stop Devin Bedell during the first inning of the first game at Drake Field on Saturday, May 4, 2109. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Published: 5/4/2019 9:38:41 PM

PITTSFIELD – Kyle Stockman dug into the batter’s box with a runner on first, his eyes fixed on Littleton starter Nick Sanborn and his mind racing on how to approach a pitcher who had shut down the Pittsfield baseball team all afternoon.

“I was just looking for a base hit. Just wanted an aggressive at-bat and to get my bat on that ball,” Stockman said.

Pittsfield’s impact senior did one better.

With a booming crack off the bat, Stockman blasted a hanging breaking ball over the Drake Field fence in the top of the seventh to break a 2-2 tie. His towering home run powered the Panthers to their second win of the afternoon over Littleton, 4-3, on Saturday in Game 2 of a Division IV doubleheader.

“We just wanted to bump up the energy,” Stockman said. “That was the key part. We were lacking energy in the second game and we just needed a spark to get us going.”

Stockman provided that spark with his bat in the second game, but used his arm in the opener to pitch a complete game with 11 strikeouts, helping Pittsfield roll past Littleton, 9-3.

It was part of a brilliant day on the mound for Pittsfield, which saw Devin Bedell work out of a bases-loaded situation in the final frame of Game 2 to preserve the win and cap off a complete game of his own.

“We knew Littleton was a good team, they always are,” said Pittsfield coach Rob Stockman, whose team sits alone atop D-IV at 10-0. “I told those guys (Bedell, Stockman), ‘We’re lining up our 1-2 pitchers and we’re going to go at them and see how we stack up against a northern team.’ Those guys are our leaders and they did it on the mound.”

After losing a handful of impact players to graduation during the offseason, including two infield and outfield starters, the Panthers haven’t lost a step this spring. They’ve won every game on their schedule to date, have scored 10 or more runs seven times already, and are doing it all with five underclassmen in the lineup.

“I’ve been pleasantly surprised,” coach Stockman said. “And when we had two games like this today, to see (the underclassmen) step up … they made the plays when they needed and that gives me encouragement that they can handle tough situations and hopefully as we grow and get more good games, we’ll be battle-tested.”

There was perhaps no bigger test for some of Pittsfield’s inexperienced players than the final outs of Game 2.

Following Nick Sanborn’s second home run of the day for Littleton (5-5) that tied the score at 2-all in the bottom of the sixth and Kyle Stockman’s go-ahead two-run homer in the seventh, the Crusaders quickly loaded the bases in their half of the seventh trailing by two.

Josh Finkle nearly sent the Crusaders home with a walk-off win on a high fly ball to left field, but sophomore Ben Stopyro ran down the ball at the warning track and Littleton was forced to settle for a sacrifice fly.

Littleton’s No. 5 hitter Tyler Murro then roped a hard line drive to center field and right at freshman Decota Maura-Giddis, who left his feet briefly, adjusted and gloved the final out.

“It would have been nice to come away with the split,” Littleton coach A.J. Bray said. “But for us to walk out of here knowing we were 5 feet away on either one of those hits from winning this ballgame is something we can hang our hat on so I’m happy with that.”

Game 1 was all about Kyle Stockman, and the ace of the staff delivered a gem. He went seven innings, struck out 11 Littleton batters and allowed one earned run on five hits and three walks.

“Honestly this was one of his better starts,” coach Stockman said. “He’s had some shoulder issues and this is really the first game that we really stretched him out. I thought he pitched great. He had command of his curveball, he was pounding the zone and I really thought it was one of his best games.”

And the Panthers were there to provide run support from the first inning on.

Pittsfield took advantage of two walks in the first to plate a pair of runs on passed balls and added a solo run in the second before opening things up in the fourth.

After three free passes loaded the bases, Gavin Bedell poked a two-run single to the outfield and Jesse MacGlashing came through with a run-producing hit of his own. Pittsfield continued to add on in the fifth, scoring on an RBI double for Gavin Bedell and an infield single off the bat of DJ Zensky.

The Panthers will put their unbeaten record on the line when they host Newmarket (5-0) on Tuesday.

(Jay McAree can be reached at 369-3371, jmcaree@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @JayMcAree.)

Baseball

Keene 2, Concord 1

Key players: Concord – Eric Sullivan (6 IP, 11 H, 1 BB, 3 K), Sean McDonough (1 IP, 0 H, 1 K), Kyle Hill (hit, run), Tyler Bruns (hit), Adrian Kennedy (hit), Zach Miles (RBI), Trevor Smith (defense as catcher, threw out two runners)

Highlights: Smith played exceptionally well at catcher, throwing out two Blackbird baserunners and the Tide pitching staff was strong, but it couldn’t overcome Concord’s struggles at the plate, ending the Tide’s nine-game win streak to open the season.

Coach’s quote: “We got great pitching from Eric (Sullivan) and Sean (McDonough) today and played another errorless game defensively. We were unable to get a clutch hit when we needed it and that was the story of the game.” – Concord’s Scott Owen

Records: Keene 7-5; Concord 9-1

Boys’ Track

Bow 131, Newmarket 20

Key players: Bow – Joe Rychwalski (1st 100, 1st 200, 1st 400), Riley King (1st shot put, 1st pole vault), Izak Furr (1st triple jump, 1st long jump), Tyler Bennett (1st 110 hurdles, 2nd javelin, 2nd high jump), Glenn Lewis (1st javelin, 2nd discus, 2nd high jump), Kirpal Demian (1st 1,600, 2nd 3,200), Nick Detrio (1st high jump, 3rd 110 hurdles), Caleb Stonecipher (1st discus, 3rd shot put), Gabe Neff (1st 800), Colin Lessard (1st 3,200), 4x100 (1st), 4x400 (1st)

Highlights: The Falcons won all but one event to decisively defeat the Mules in a dual meet, highlighted by Rychwalski’s sweep of the sprinting events.

Belmont 1st, Bishop Brady 6th

Key players: Belmont – Lucas Mathieu (tied 1st 100, 3rd javelin), Ben Hillsgrove (tied 1st 100, 3rd 200), Zach Ennis (1st 800, 2nd 400), Bryce Hall (1st high jump, 5th triple jump), Aidan Rupp (2nd 110 hurdles, 2nd 300 hurdles), Devin Bricknell (2nd long jump), Zack Duclos (2nd shot put, 5th discus), Nolan Gagnon (3rd 400), Micah Edgren (3rd triple jump, 5th 110 hurdles), Brendan Kelley (3rd shot put, 6th discus), 4x100 (1st), 4x400 (2nd), 4x800 (2nd); Bishop Brady – Oscar Miller (1st 3,200), Joey Bergeron (3rd discus), Maxwell Brown (3rd 800), 4x400 (3rd)

Highlights: The Raiders had several strong performances to win an eight-team meet on their home track with 154 points, well ahead of Kennett (83), Inter-Lakes (74), Somersworth (68), Wilton-Lyndeborough (44), Bishop Brady (38), Epping (22) and Woodsville (10).

Girls’ Track

Bow 77, Newmarket 46

Key players: Bow – Kristina Pizzi (1st 200, 1st 400), Maddie Michaelis (1st high jump, 1st long jump), Isabella Slocum (1st 100 hurdles), Emma Hilton (1st javelin), Sage Landers (1st discus, tied 2nd shot put), Emma Wilke (1st triple jump), Emma Van Ham (2nd 100), Eve Anderson (2nd 400), Sarah Ciotti (2nd 800), Madeline Soucy (2nd javelin), Madison Tibbetts (tied 2nd shot put, 3rd javelin), 4x100 (1st), 4x400 (1st)

Highlights: The Falcons took advantage of their only home meet of the season, picking up several victories in the field events and Pizzi winning two events on the track, helping Bow win a dual meet against the Mules.

Belmont 2nd, Bishop Brady 4th

Key players: Belmont – Alice Riley (1st 1,600, 1st 3,200), Molly Sottak (1st shot put), Gabrielle Day (2nd 100, 3rd long jump), Jada Edgren (2nd 200, 5th 100), Skylar Ruelke (2nd high jump, 5th long jump), 4x100 (1st), 4x400 (2nd), 4x800 (2nd), Bishop Brady – Abby Shagena (1st 800, 3rd triple jump, 3rd javelin, 4th long jump), Sarah Sponenberg (2nd 100 hurdles)

Highlights: The Raiders won four events and finished second in five others to finish second in a nine-team meet on their home track. Division II Kennett (120 points) topped the D-III teams competing – Belmont (99), Inter-Lakes (93), Bishop Brady (36), Somersworth (35), Woodsville (21), Laconia (20), Wilton-Lyndeborough (18) and Epping (16).

Boys’ Lacrosse

Kingswood 10, Coe-Brown 5

Key players: Coe-Brown – Dominic Cronshaw (defense), Cal Welch (defense), Ryan Holland (defense), Dakota West (G, faceoffs), Jacob Radwan (G, faceoffs)

Coach’s quote: “Our defense continues to keep us in games. ... It is time for our guys to elevate if we want to stay relevant this season. I believe we have yet to put our best effort on the field for four consecutive quarters.” – Coe-Brown’s Tony DePalma

Records: Kingswood 3-3; Coe-Brown 1-4


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