The Flood Auto Connie Mack team lost its final game of the regular season to East Providence.
That didn’t matter one bit when the playoffs began.
Top-seeded Flood met East Providence again for a quarterfinal playoff series and rolled to a sweep in impressive fashion. Flood stormed to a 13-1 victory in Thursday’s game one before winning 7-0 in game two on Friday.
“Right from the get-go, everybody was there and ready to go,” said Flood head coach Bryan Leahey. “They were even asking me if we could do infield/outfield early so we could get it out of the way and get focused. They were ready to play.”
Flood lost its regular-season finale by an 8-7 score, but East Providence was never that close in the playoff series.
Flood pounded out 11 hits in game one and took advantage of nine walks and three East Providence errors in the 13-1 win. Alex Cerbo went 3-for-4 with three RBI and Gary Geisser had two hits and two RBI to lead the attack.
On the mound, Dillon Manfredi started and allowed just one run in 5.1 innings of work. He struck out seven.
“Dillon pitched awesome for us,” Leahey said.
With all the momentum, Flood continued to cruise in game two. The offense was solid again with Cerbo and Mike Dean delivering big days, but this time, the pitching took center stage.
Bobby Lineberger got the start and took a no-hitter into the sixth inning. East Providence finally broke it up with a bloop single that fell in between shortstop and left field. That was the only hit Lineberger allowed in six shutout innings. Jake Newberry pitched the final inning and sealed the 7-0 victory.
The win moves Flood one step closer to its second consecutive state championship. It will play Pawtucket in a semifinal series that begins tonight at 5 p.m. at Hendricken.
Leahey expects his team to be ready to go once again.
“They’re giving me all they have right now, but you can just see that they’re still hungry,” Leahey said. “They want to get better and they want more. For them to have that hunger and drive when they’re already played so well in the playoffs if just great to see.”
Pawtucket is the No. 2 seed from the Dickerman Division. Flood plays in the Cooney Division, so the teams didn’t meet in the regular season.
Pawtucket went 11-5 in the regular season, finishing just behind first-place Warwick. Pawtucket beat Slocum in its quarterfinal series.