The Pilgrim Patriots went to Mickey Stevens and cruised past crosstown rival Toll Gate 8-1 on Tuesday afternoon.
Pilgrim senior Tyler Parks pitched strong six innings and struck out nine while yielding three hits.
“We will take it,” Pilgrim manager Nolan Landy said. “Absolutely. I mean, again, Tyler Parks came out and shut the door on them. That was huge. We got up 3-0 in the second and that was big for us. Offensively this year we’ve been struggling scoring runs. So, it’s good Tyler shut the door.”
Jake Randall, a junior, struck out three and yielded three runs on four hits with two walks and a hit batsman.
“It was just one of those days where Randall didn’t have it and Tyler Parks kept us off balance all day,” Toll Gate manager Nick Durand said. “He threw strikes and we didn’t.”
Pilgrim senior Andrew Merryfield had a hit, a walk, and drove in two runs while sophomores Chase Pariseau added two hits and an RBI and Kenny Rix added a hit, a walk, plus an RBI.
“It feels great,” Rix said. “We all worked together as a team. We were preparing for this game and I’m just very proud of the boys. Everyone one contributed when they needed to and I’m very excited about the win.”
Pilgrim got on the scoreboard in the top of the second inning when Rix belted an RBI single to deep right field and scored Mike Hampson, which put the Pats up 1-0.
Next, Merryfield socked a single to left, which drove in Will Pariseau, and then Rix, following a miscue by the left fielder, and that put Pilgrim on top 3-0.
“We’ve been preaching timely hitting, putting the ball in play, and putting pressure on ‘em,” Landy said. “That’s what we’ve been focusing on. So, those guys did it. Rix and Merryfield came through.”
After three scoreless innings, Pilgrim added another run in the sixth when Dylan Gallagher scored following an error at second base, which occurred when the catcher Jacob Paul threw over to try and gun down Merryfield, who stole second. Gallagher was pinch running for the designated hitter Will Pariseau, and the run put Pilgrim up 4-0.
In the seventh inning, Pilgrim added four more runs to its cushion.
First, Jared Reminder scored during a passed ball and enlarged the Pilgrim lead to 5-0.
Next, Merryfield launched a sacrifice fly to right, which scored Hampson and put the Pats up 6-0.
Will Pariseau put Pilgrim up 7-0 when he came home from third after a passed ball, and then Chase Pariseau socked a sacrifice fly to center field, which scored Rix and gave Pilgrim an 8-0 lead.
Toll Gate’s lone run came in the bottom of the seventh when William Waggoner scored from third following an error at first during a 6-3 double play attempt.
Parks came on to pitch the seventh inning, but after walking the first two batters, Will Martino, a senior, came on in relief and got the final three outs.
“Martino, he’s a great weapon to have off the bench,” Landy said. “He comes in and the kid just throws strikes. That’s what he does. It’s great to have a kid on the bench who can do that. And he knows his role, so right now I’m very happy with the way things are going for him.”
All three of Pilgrims wins have come while Parks was starting on the bump. The Pats improve to 3-6 and they hope to keep the wins coming.
“Definitely,” Rix said. “I’m feeling very confident in the boys. We got a win last week against Ponaganset, and then we got a nice win right now. So, we just got to keep it rolling and hopefully make that run for the playoffs.”
Toll gate falls to 5-5 and hopes to avenge the loss when the team travels to Don Mezzanotte Field for a rematch against Pilgrim today.
“That’s the plan,” Durand said. “We’re supposed to be there on Thursday, weather permitting. So hopefully we come out and drop the hammer.”