SENIOR CAPTAIN Trevor Botto went the distance for Melrose in their 5-4 walk off win over Winchester. (Alison Dolan photo)


Walk off wins a calling card this spring



MELROSE—It’s been quite a week for the Melrose High varsity baseball team. The boys in red and white have improved to 8-6 following wins over Winchester and Swampscott this week, though they fell to a talented Arlington team at home on Tuesday, 7-4.

Melrose picked up a key win over Winchester, 5-4, on Wednesday, April 27 at Morelli Field, another walk-off win that saw senior hurler Trevor Botto go the distance with in 7 innings, giving up 4 runs and tallying 5 strikeouts. “Trevor pitched excellent and they only ended up with four runs because we didn’t exactly help him out,” says Melrose coach Scott Searles. “If you look at any of our games this year, our pitching is really held up.”

Melrose’s Drew Harrington had a big double that drove in two in the fourth inning, and senior Dom Lamentea went 2-2 with a walk. “I thought we had a great approach at the plate,” says Searles. “We really made them work and we were very patient. As a team we stole 12 bases—Malcolm Whitfield led the way with 5. That was really the difference in the game.”

Melrose let Winchester back in on the top of the 7th when they held a 4-2 lead, but allowed two Winchester runs across to tie it up. Melrose would fight back however. Batter Rowan Smith let off the bottom of the 7th with a walk. After Smith stole second, Mike Richards hit a deep fly ball and Smith tagged up to third. Winchester, having brought their infield in, had to contend with Melrose Rob Colozzo, who hit a ground ball to shortstop and Smith got a great jump off the bag at third and beat the throw to the plate for the win.

“Winchester has played just about every game tough,” says Searles. “I’m not sure where they were in the standings, but they weren’t a team to take lightly.”

Melrose really turned it on against Swampscott on Monday, May 2 and picked up a 4-1 victory. “We played a complete game all the way around,” says the coach. Dom Drago got the win with 7 innings pitched, 5 strikeouts and 6 hits. “Dom was fantastic today,” says the coach. “They got most of their hits early in the first two innings and then he shut it down.”

Melrose benefited from plenty of walks (8) and produced a scattering of key hits that made the difference. Melrose’s Matt Whelan and Dom Lamentea both drove in runs. Drew Harrington had a huge base hit to drive in another two in the fourth. Rowan Smith walked three times and stole three bases. Says his coach, “Rowan has really hit a good streak. In the last two games he hasn’t gotten out. Against Lexington, he was three for three with two walks and he drove in three runs.”


MELROSE BASEBALL has plenty to celebrate, including a walk-off win over Winchester, 5-4, last week. (Alison Dolan photo)


The only hiccup on the schedule this week was a 7-4 loss to a talented Arlington team. It was a rough start for Melrose as they gave up four, first-inning runs with two of them on account of an Arlington home run. Trevor Botto was able to stop the bleeding for Melrose as he hauled in a line drive right at the mound and turned to first for a double play.

The Melrose bats would go quiet and later in the third inning Arlington would capitalize on an error and a wild pitch to bring three runs across the plate in the third, making the contest 7-0 after three innings. Melrose came to life in the fourth as Malcolm Whitfield broke the silence for the Red Hawks with an RBI single, and his teammate Michael Richards would knock drive him in soon after making the ballgame 7-2.

Trevor Botto settled in and kept Arlington at bay to give his teammates a chance to claw back some more. A pair of singles from Botto and Malcolm Whitfield would start a sixth inning rally for Melrose and Michael Richards delivered another single to drive in both of his teammates to make the game 7-4.

Ben Cassavoy would relieve Botto in the seventh and would keep the game at 7-4, but Melrose would not be able to capitalize, ending their fight and the game in Arlington’s favor.

Melrose will host Medford on Thursday (post deadline) before traveling to Winchester next Wednesday for a 4:15 p.m. game.

—Jennifer Gentile contributed to this report.