Published in the May 24, 2017 edition
By DAN PAWLOWSKI
NEWBURYPORT – The baseball team added two more convincing wins last week to bring its overall record to 16-1.
Aslanian shuts down Masco
The Pioneers beat Masconomet 7-1 on May 16.
Senior captain Nicholas Aslanian pitched a complete game, striking out five and giving up zero earned runs.
“Nick Aslanian was terrific,” said head coach John O’Brien. “It was one of the better games he’s pitched all year.”
Aslanian’s performance on the hill was nothing new for the Pioneers, much like scoring seven runs or more as they have done eight times in 17 games. Lynnfield set the tone early, scoring two runs in the first inning.
O’Brien was happy with all phases of his team’s game against the Chieftains.
“We had some timely hits, great base running and good defense,” said O’Brien. “Kyle Hawes made a great catch in centerfield. Justin Juliano made a couple of great plays at short, and Bryant Dana had another great game behind the plate.”
Crush Newburyport 9-0
The Pioneers took out Newburyport 9-0 on May 18. Lynnfield’s offense couldn’t be cooled down in Newburyport, where temperatures for game time reached 92 degrees.
Sophomore Fernando Gonzalez pitched five innings for the Pioneers, giving up just two hits and striking out five.
“Fernando pitched very well,” said O’Brien. “He hit his spots, got his curve and his change involved, and had five big strikeouts in pressure situations.”
The Pioneers were once again in attack mode early on, stealing four bases and scoring four runs in the first inning. Juliano’s RBI single got the scoring going for Lynnfield, followed by Bryant Dana’s RBI single up the middle.
3rd homer for Marengi
Junior outfielder Cooper Marengi crushed his third home run of the year to deep right-centerfield to give the Pioneers a 4-0 lead in the first inning.
Lynnfield scored two more runs in the second inning, after senior captain Mike Stellato drew a walk with the bases loaded to score one. Hawes then scored another on a wild pitch.
Juliano hit a sacrifice fly in the third to score senior Michael Federico and the Pioneers added to their total in the sixth, with Marengi’s 2-RBI single making it 9-0.
Senior Matthew Collins closed the door on the Clippers in the last two innings, earning a tip of the cap from O’Brien.
“For Collins to come in the last two innings and shut them down, that’s excellent,” said O’Brien. “He did a great job closing it out.”
There was a long list of players who earned a nod from O’Brien in this one, including Marengi for his four runs batted in, Juliano for his timely hits and phenomenal defense at shortstop, and Dana for calling another excellent game behind the plate.
Lynnfield got the weekend off to get ready to play rival North Reading during senior day on Tuesday, taking place after press time. O’Brien was excited for his 10 seniors to close out their careers against North Reading, a team that is always tough to beat.
“Some of them have played here for four years, so it should be a great day for them,” said O’Brien. “If we can play like we’ve been playing, we can give them a game. They’re a good team.”
The Pioneers finish off the regular season with two non-league games. Lynnfield travels to Belmont on Friday, May 26 for the Brendan Grant tournament game beginning at 3 p.m. Lynnfield hosts Reading on Sunday, May 28, beginning at 1 p.m.