Baseball battles for control in CCC race

John Mikosz dives into home plate during a 2-1 loss to East Catholic.

By BRIAN JENNINGS

STAFF WRITER

A 10-run rout of Bristol Eastern on the road, complimentary of 10 strikeouts on the mounds and nine hits at the plate, had the Blue Knights rolling into the week. But a one-run loss to East Catholic cooled off the bats and snapped Southington’s three-game winning streak.

The Knights bounced back, ending the week with a one-run win over NFA.

As Southington continues to fight for better seeding in the state tournament (currently sitting in eighth in Class LL) the Knights have not lost sight of their second goal: to clinch the CCC Central Blue divisional title.

With six games remaining in the regular season and a game ahead of Simsbury in first place of the division with a 5-1 record, Southington coach Charlie Lembo just wants to see his team play the way we’re capable of.

“I’d like to see the whole lineup play that way in any given game,” the coach said. “I know we have talent here with guys that can play, but I’d like to see the whole lineup hit one through nine in a full game.”

The Knights will fight for better seeding in the state tournament this week with a four-game slate, featuring contests against Greenwich (7-10), Simsbury (6-7), Farmington (4-10), and Bulkeley-Weaver (3-11). Southington is currently 10-4 overall.

Win at Bristol Eastern

MAY 8—The Knights began the week by earning their third-straight win on Monday with an 11-1 triumph at Bristol Eastern.

Southington scored six runs in the third and fourth innings combined, adding four more runs in the fifth. The Knights finished with nine hits and one error.

John Mikosz went 2-for-4 at the plate with four RBIs, two doubles, and a walk. Jonathan Gray went 3-for-5 with two RBIs and two runs scored. Josh Panarella went 2-for-5 with three RBIs, two runs scored, and a double.

Mikosz started on the mound and remained undefeated on the year by picking up his fifth win of the season after going six innings with 10 strikeouts, allowing six hits and a walk. Bailey Robarge (2-0) closed.

Loss vs. East Catholic

MAY 12—A four-day break didn’t help the Knights following their win at Bristol Eastern, causing their three-game winning streak to snap with a one-run loss, 2-1, to East Catholic at home on Friday. Both teams wore pink on their jerseys in honor of the annual pink game, raising money in the fight against breast cancer.

The Eagles jumped out to a 1-0 lead off a base hit in the first inning. Mikosz led the fourth off with a single and knotted the score with a head-first slide into home plate on a base knock by Jeremy Mercier (2-for-3).

The Eagles loaded the bases with a double, a hit batter, and a single in the seventh, leaving Ryan Sheehan (2-3) to walk in the winning run before the inning was ended on a double play.

The Knights put their first two batters on base in the bottom of the inning until a strikeout and double play ended the game. Southington mustered just six hits in the game and committed two errors.

Sheehan threw a complete game on the mound with nine strikeouts in 87 pitches, allowing eight hits and two walks.

Win vs. NFA

MAY 13—The next day, the Knights rounded out the week by flipping the script from Friday’s loss with a 2-1 win over NFA at home.

With two outs in the second inning, the Wildcats took a 1-0 lead off an error. Mercier led off the bottom of the inning with a double and eventually rounded the bases to knot up the score on a sacrifice fly by Ryan McIntyre.

With two gone in the fifth, Brayden Cooney got on base with a double and was driven in by Matt Sciota to score the go-ahead run on a base hit. Southington finished the game with six hits and committed two errors.

Robarge threw a complete game with eight strikeouts in 86 pitches, allowing just two hits and one walk.

For this week’s box scores, click here: (www.southingtonobserver.com/2017/05/16/weekly-scoreboard-for-the-may-19-edition). To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.

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