LaBonte's Stellar Start Spurs Moose Victory
SANFORD - Trevor LaBonte (York, Maine/Maryland) put the team on his back and willed the Mainers to a 4-0 win over the Upper Valley Nighthawks. He put together his best outing of the season, going further than any other starter in green and white in 2019, and kept his opposition silent all game long.
The contest's only offense came in the very first inning. Against Nighthawks starter Andrew DaRoche, Drew DeMartino (Pittsfield, Mass./Hartford) and Shane Marshall (Webster, N.Y./Binghamton) drew one-out walks. Following a strikeout, it looked like the visitors would escape the frame without incurring any damage. But, Connor Tate (Bishop, Ga./Georgia) snuck a groundball underneath the glove of third baseman David Marcano to bring DeMartino home and plate the first run.
The Moose were keen to make the Nighthawks pay for their mistake, and they did just that. Erik Stock (Virginia Beach, Va./UConn) and Jack Van Remortel (Carmel, Ind./Michigan) notched back-to-back base hits, scoring three runs to push the lead to 4-0.
That was all LaBonte would need as he overpowered the visitors throughout his start. He racked up 7.1 scoreless innings while allowing just two hits and striking out seven, including a stretch in the third in fourth where he fanned four straight batters.
He retired the first 17 batters he faced before Jack Zyska roped a fastball into left field and broke up the perfect game bid.
The Nighthawks finally got to him in the eighth inning. After a leadoff single and a walk put runners on first and second with one out, Mainers skipper Cejay Suarez decided to make the move to the bullpen. Before Matthew Pushard (Brewer, Maine/Maine) entered the game to make his seventh appearance this year, LaBonte was greeted to a standing ovation by the Moose faithful and congratulated by nearly all his teammates as he exited the field.
Upon his arrival, Pushard continued his team's dominance on the mound. He struck out the first batter he faced and Ryan Turenne (Lynn, Mass./Maine) gunned down Brian Moore attempting to steal third to end the inning, holding the Nighthawks at bay and taking their shutout through eight.
Pushard went right back to work in the ninth and dominated the last three hitters of the ballgame. He struck out the side in the ninth to hammer down his first save and close out a 4-0 win.
The Moose go right back to work tomorrow to host the Vermont Mountaineers at 6:30 PM. If you are unable to get to Goodall Park, you can keep up with all the action on the Patriot Subaru Mainers Radio Network powered by the NECBL Broadcast Network. Until then, stay connected to all things Mainers by visiting sanfordmainers.com and following the team on social media.
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New England Collegiate Baseball League Stories from July 9, 2019
- LaBonte's Stellar Start Spurs Moose Victory - Sanford Mainers
- Bay Sox Fall 13-2 to Red-Hot Sharks - New Bedford Bay Sox
- Mountaineers Avenge Losses to Keene, Defeat Swamp Bats, 7-3 - Vermont Mountaineers
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