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Comeback Kids Get It Done Late in Laconia

July 14, 2019 - New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) - Sanford Mainers News Release

LACONIA - Down but not out, the Mainers rallied in the final moments, erasing a one-run deficit in the ninth inning to take an 8-6 victory over the Winnipesaukee Muskrats.

In the early goings, Muskrats batters hit everything in sight. With two outs in the second inning, a walk followed by three straight doubles gave the hosts a quick three-run lead. A solo home run off the bat of Sam Cochrane an inning later put the Mainers in an early 4-0 hole.

After giving up the early runs, Matt Rudis (Madisonville, Texas/Texas Christian) quickly bore down and found his groove on the mound. From the fourth inning on, he threw four scoreless frames, surrendering just two hits while not allowing a single Muskrat past second base.

The Moose finally cracked the scoreboard in the fifth inning. Shane Marshall (Webster, N.Y./Binghamton) got a hold of a 1-0 fastball and deposited it over the center field wall for a leadoff solo home run.

They added onto their comeback efforts in the seventh inning with a bit of help from the Muskrats infield. Having runners on the first and second with one out, Erik Stock (Virginia Beach, Va./UConn) hit a slow roller to second base that had fielder's choice written all over it. But, shortstop Phil Conti tried to double off the speedy Stock and airmailed his throw to first, enabling Drew DeMartino (Pittsfield, Mass./Hartford) to scamper home from second base and cut the host's lead to two.

It did not take the Moose long after that to bring the score level, striking twice against the Muskrats bullpen in the eighth. Following two consecutive strikeouts to open the inning, the offense went to work. Jack Van Remortel (Carmel, Ind./Michigan) and Sterling Hayes (San Diego, Calif./Vanderbilt) drew back-to-back walks, permitting DeMartino the opportunity to load the bases with a single. Given a chance to be a hero, Marshall came through in the clutch, driving a single off the left-field wall to plate two and level the contest at four.

Despite letting their lead slip away, the Muskrats refused to quit. A pair of errors got Cochrane to second base to lead off the bottom of the eighth, and a Michael Martinez single sent him home right away, getting his team back in front 5-4.

They continued to mount a scoring threat by loading the bases themselves with one out, but reliever Jacob Parker (Monroe, Ga./Georgia Southern) stood firm on the mound. He punched out the next two batters he faced to quash the Winnipesaukee scoring threat and hold their lead at one.

Though three outs separated the Mainers from defeat, they refused to give in and continued to fight at the dish. Connor Tate (Bishop, Ga./Georgia) led off the ninth inning with a walk and advanced to second on a failed force out attempt. Looking to put his team ahead in style, Orlando Adams (Atlanta, Ga./Kentucky) crushed a curveball into the Laconia night sky for a three-run home run, putting the Moose up 7-5.

Nevertheless, the Mainers were still not satisfied. Hayes kept the rally going by reaching on a fielder's choice and promptly stole second base, enabling DeMartino to drive him in and register a key late insurance run.

The Muskrats tacked on one more in the bottom of the ninth, but the three-run deficit proved too much to overcome. Parker returned to the hill to record the final three outs, slamming the door on an 8-6 Mainers win.

The Moose return to the friendly confines of Goodall Park to host the Keene Swamp Bats, the first of three games in a row against their Northern Division rival. If you can't get to the field, you can catch all the action on the Patriot Subaru Sanford Mainers Radio Network powered by the NECBL Broadcast Network. Until then, stay in touch with the team by visiting and following the team on social media.

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New England Collegiate Baseball League Stories from July 14, 2019

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