Collette storms back late to defeat NEFL
Collette Post 10 scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning to stun New England Frozen Lemonade, 6-5, at RIC on Tuesday evening. Rasec Torres drove in the deciding run for Collette.
NEFL’s Matt Martinez pitched five solid innings, giving up three runs on eight hits while striking out five and walking one. Martinez and his battery mate, Marcus Alexander, combined to make a nice tandem.
“Marcus was making good calls behind the plate and I’ve been throwing to him for the past three years, so I just know when he makes a good call,” Martinez said.
Zach Odsen led NEFL with two hits and two RBIs and AJ Ucci added three hits. Ray Aponte led Collette with three hits and one RBI.
Jared Schott started on the hill for Collette and NEFL jumped on him early. The leadoff hitter, Evan O’Connor, reached base after his ground ball was bobbled by the second baseman. Next, Kevin Cox and Odsen hammered back-to-back singles to load the bases with no one out. Schott walked the next hitter, Alexander, and a run came home, giving NEFL a 1-0 lead. Next, Christian Sanchez drove in a run from third to extend the NEFL edge to 2-0, but that’s all that it would muster.
NEFL worked the bases loaded again in the bottom of the second inning, but it wasn’t able to push across any runs this time. The runners left on base proved costly.
“Honestly, I think we shouldn’t have been in that position,” Martinez said. “We just weren’t hitting the ball like we normally do. I mean, the bases loaded in the first three innings; that killed us. We didn’t get any runs across. We only had two.”
In the top of the third, Collette would knot it at 2. Dylan Boisclair got on via an infield hit. With one out, Aponte launched a triple into the alley in right center, scoring Boisclair and pulling Collette within 2-1. With Derek Geiger up to bat, Aponte stole home on a ball in the dirt, tying the game at 2.
Aponte came up big again in the top of the fifth when he hammered a one-out double to left. With two down, Peter Spetelunas hit an RBI single to score Aponte and give Collette a 3-2 lead.
With two outs in the bottom of the inning, A.J. Ucci hit a single up the middle. Then, O’Connor launched a fly ball that was dropped in center field, putting runners at first and second. Cox earned a walk next to load the bases. Then, Odsen blasted a two-run single to put NEFL on top, 4-3. On a passed ball, Cox scored from third, extending NEFL’s lead to 5-3.
Aponte led off the top of the seventh with a single. Odsen, who was pitching in relief, struck out Geiger before walking Spetelunas. With runners at the corners, Brendon Aldridge hit a laser at the second baseman, Izzo, who couldn’t make a play. That error was followed by another error at third, which led to two runs coming home and tying the game at 5. Then, Torres followed it with an RBI single to go up 6-5.