The Warwick Vets Middle School Hurricanes crushed the Park View Panthers 15-4 during a baseball clash on Wednesday afternoon in Cranston.
Elijah Gingras topped Warwick with three hits and three RBI, while his teammate Colby Barker, an eighth grader, pitched four innings and struck out five.
“Colby pitched well,” Warwick manager Sean Rainey said. “He started off slow. Actually, the whole team started off slow. But we ended up waking up and doing some damage. Colby started out a little shaky on the mound, but he got it together. And he’s a good pitcher if he puts his head into it.”
Charlie Adams, a sixth grader, started on the bump for the Panthers and pitched 3 1/3 innings, while fanning two.
In the bottom of the first, Park View got an RBI single from David Gutierrez and went up 1-0. Next, Adrian Pimental scored during a passed ball, and extended the Panthers’ edge to 2-0.
After two scoreless innings, Vets got on the board in the top of the third when Barker helped his own cause by hitting a sacrifice fly to left field and driving in Andrew Fusco. Then, Mark Woods crushed a bomb to deep right for a two-run double and gave Vets a 3-2 advantage.
Next, with the bases loaded, Bobby Vale belted an RBI single and drove in Jadan Rodas, which put Warwick up 4-2. Then, Vets increased its lead to 5-2 when AJ Ferreira launched a sac fly to right and scored Woods.
In the top of the fourth, Vets added to its advantage when Fusco socked an RBI single to left and knocked in Dylan Roberts, which made it 6-2.
Roberts scored again in the top of the sixth, this time, during a passed ball, which upped Warwick’s buffer to 7-2. After that, Gingras ripped an RBI single by the shortstop and raised the Hurricanes’ lead to 8-2. Then, Barker belted a shot by the shortstop and scored Rodas, which put Vets up 9-2.
In the bottom of the sixth, Park View’s John Varin hit an RBI single and scored Gutierrez, while pulling the Panthers within 9-3.
Next, Warwick tried to gun down Varin, who stole second, but instead, the throw sailed into the outfield, and that allowed Varin to come all the way around and score, which inched Park View within 9-4.
But Warwick picked up some more runs in the top of the seventh.
First, Roberts rocketed a shot off the glove of third baseman, Jackson Rennick, which scored Tyler Cote and extended Warwick’s lead to 10-4.
Then, seventh grader Braxton Pearson socked an RBI single to left and scored Jack McConnell, and extended the Warwick edge to 11-4. Next, Gingras earned a bases-loaded walk, which scored Roberts and put Vets up 12-4.
After that, Pearson scored from third during a passed ball and ascended the Hurricanes’ lead to 13-4. Bobby Court followed that with a bases-loaded walk, which scored Fusco and put Vets on top 14-4.
That should have concluded the contest, but due to a scoring mistake, Vets batted one more time and earned one more run when Henry Kearns walked with the bases loaded and gave Vets a 15-4 win.
The next day, Warwick fell to Cole Middle School by a final score of 11-4.
Vets now sits at 3-1 on the season and hosts Winman next on Wednesday at 1 p.m. for an injury fund game.
It’s early yet, but Barker, Warwick’s ace, feels Vets has what it takes to get to the playoffs.
“I think we can make the postseason,” Barker said. “We have a good shot. We have a good team. We can hit and we can field.”