Late Comeback Falls Short As Massasoit Baseball Is Eliminated

#10 Justin Martinho
#10 Justin Martinho

BROCKTON, Mass. ---- A late comeback by the Massasoit CC baseball team fell short, as the Warriors lost 7-6 to Holyoke CC on Saturday afternoon in Region XXI playoff action.

The loss eliminates Massasoit (12-24) from the playoffs, as the Cougars (11-12) advance to Region XXI Finals to take on top-seed Northern Essex (27-2) on Sunday at 11 a.m.

Massasoit got to within a game of the regional finals, by defeating Bunker Hill, 5-1, on Saturday morning at Edgar's Field.

Offensive highlights included Dave Murphy (Plymouth) going 5-for-9 with three runs scored, three RBI, two doubles and a solo homer over the two games. Justin Martinho (Dighton) also went 5-for-9 and knocked in three.

Game 1: Massasoit 5, Bunker Hill 1
Jakes Stearns (Plymouth) twirled a complete game six-hitter and Justin Martinho and Nick Oliveira (New Bedford) each knocked in two to top the Bulldogs.

Massasoit jumped out early to a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first against the Bunker Hill. The first five batters in the Warrior lineup reached, as Murphy got things going with a RBI double. Martinho followed with a ringing two-run single prior to Oliveira knocking in a run to account for the big first frame.

The Warrior lineup would scratch across a fifth run in the third, as Tom Protentis (Lakeville) walked, stole second and scored on a base hit from Oliveira.

The five runs was more than enough run support for Stearns (2-5) as the lefty struck out three and walked three in his nine innings of work. The freshmen received help from his defense, as the Warriors turned a pair of double plays and committed only one error in the field.

Murphy finished 3-for-5 with a double and one RBI. Martinho and Oliveira each collected two hits and knocked in two in the victory.

Game 2: Holyoke 7, Massasoit 6
Down 7-5 entering the top of the ninth, Massasoit rallied and brought the tying run just 90-feet away. But the Warriors tried to score off a wild pitch with two outs and the base runner was gunned down at the plate to end the game and the season with a one-run loss.

The game started almost as a mirror image to Massasoit's first game of the day, as the Warriors plated four runs off four hits in the top of the opening frame.

Murphy and Martinho clocked RBI hits before Michael Scibilio (Bourne) roped a two-run double to right-center to own the early 4-0 advantage.

But Holyoke would hang around, plating single runs in the first and second innings against Massasoit starter Zack Reid (2-6).

In the fifth, the Warriors extended its lead when Murphy tattooed a solo homer to left, his fourth of the season, to take a 5-2 cushion.

The Cougars responded with some two-out lighting in the fifth, touching home four times all with two down. A Massasoit infield error led to three unearned runs in the frame as HCC took a 6-5 lead.

HCC added a pivotal insurance run in the eight, as Tim Danehey roped a two-out RBI double to give the Cougars a 7-5 edge.

In the top of the ninth is where things got interesting. Matt Levasseur (Milton) smacked a two-out RBI single to plate Oliveira and put runners on the corners for Murphy.

With Murphy at the plate, HCC reliever Noah Paker (6-1) uncorked a wild pitch. Unfortunately for Massasoit, the base runner on third attempted to score on the play and was tagged out at home to end the game.

Parker, who had pitched a compete-game nine-inning victory the day before, chucked four innings of relief to earn his second win in as many days. The righty struck out two and allowed one run off four hits in relief of starter Matt Serra who fired the first five frames.

Zack Reid was saddled with the loss or Massasoit. The righty went 7.2 innings, yielding seven runs (three earned) with six strikeouts.

At the plate, Martinho went 3-for-4 with one RBI, while Murphy was 2-for-4 with a double, homer and knocked in two. Tom Protentis added a two-hit game, including a triple.