The Winthrop High baseball team will host Swampscott tomorrow (Thursday) evening at 5:00 in a preliminary round contest of the MIAA Division 3 North baseball tournament. The winner will move onto first round action on Friday at Whittier Vocational School at a time to be announced.
Winthrop comes into the tourney as the number 15 seed in the 19 team bracket with a 7-13 record. Swampscott is seeded 18th and finished the year with a 6-14 mark.
Both the Vikings and the Big Blue know each other quite well and will be meeting for the third time this season. The teams split their Northeastern Conference contests, with Winthrop taking the first match earlier in the season and Swampscott taking the rematch two weeks ago.
"It’s always problematic playing the same team three times," said WHS head coach Jim Gillis. "You look forward to meeting somebody new in the tourney. On the other hand, we know their strengths and weaknesses, as they know ours, so the game comes down to who executes better."
Winthrop wrapped up its regular season last week with an 18-7 defeat to Saugus and a 6-1 loss to Watertown at Bentley College.
The Saugus affair featured a six RBI effort by Viking Joe D’Amore, who clouted a grand slam in the first inning and then a two run double later in the game to go along with a single.
However, Saugus put together a 16 run rally in the first inning, all of which came after two were out. "I’d never seen anything like that in all my years in baseball,"noted Gillis. "We didn’t commit any errors, but they kept getting hits of all kinds and walks to keep it going."
Christian Howard eventually came on in relief in the first and kept Saugus at bay thereafter. Nick McCarthy also tossed an inning of relief and struck out two Saugus batters.