Published in the July 10, 2018 edition.


RYAN DIBENEDETTO threw a two-hitter at Moulton last night to pick up the win for the Slappers. (Michael Maloney Photo)

WAKEFIELD — The young gun Slappers fought back from a 3-1 deficit in the bottom of the seventh, against The Unknowns and delivered a knockout punch on a Ben Tomczyk walk-off three-run double to win the game 4-3 before a packed house at Moulton Park.

Slappers’ starter Ryan DiBenedetto out-dueled Adam Chanley of The Unknowns, throwing a two-hitter and allowing three runs while Chanley allowed eight hits and four runs.

The Orange finally broke through against DiBenedetto in the top of the fourth. After Slappers’ centerfielder Matt Rej made an outstanding running catch off the bat of Chad Dwyer, Graham Robertson ripped a triple to left centerfield. Rookie Brendan Coughlin then walked. The former Wakefield High School baseball captain then stole second base with the throw sailing into centerfield, allowing Robertson to score. Coughlin then chugged to third base where the throw eluded the third baseman and Coughlin scrambled home with the second run of the game.

The Slappers would cut the lead in half in the bottom of the fifth inning. Nick Porter doubled to right field and advanced to third base on a Paul McGunigle single to center. After a strikeout, Tomczyk knocked in Porter with a base knock to make it 2-1.

The Unknowns would tack on to their lead in the top of the seventh. Luke Martin walked and then stole second with his freakish speed. The throw was not played cleanly, allowing Martin to reach third base. DiBenedetto bore down and struck out the next two Orange hitters before Brandon Panarese chopped one to short and beat out the late throw, and Martin scored from third with third run.

The Slappers, knowing that Chanley was tiring, took advantage of the sloppy defense by the Orange. Porter led off with a blooper to right field. McGunigle scorched a hit through the left side for a single. DiBenedetto then lofted a short fly ball behind the shortstop that The Unknowns outfielder dropped to load the bases with no outs. With the victory pizza sitting on the bench, Tomczyk ripped an absolute no-doubter double down the line that plated all three Slapper runners to win the game in dramatic fashion.