WHS baseball team ready for tourney run
The Winthrop High baseball team kept alive its hopes for qualifying for the state tournament with a 5-4 victory over Brighton this past Friday.
The Vikings can punch their ticket for a Journey to the Tourney if they attain a .500 record against the Division 3 teams on their schedule, of which Brighton is one. Winthrop now sports a 1-2 mark against D-3 opponents and with their final three contests of the season all against D-3 foes, the Vikings must win two of the three to reach the post-season.
The first of those games was slated for yesterday (Wednesday) against Swampscott. Winthrop treks to West Roxbury Friday and will travel to Bentley College for the season finale against Saugus next Wednesday.
Junior Zack Mills turned in a complete game effort in the Brighton victory, tossing all seven innings in which he yielded just six hits and two earned runs while fanning six enemy batters. Zack ended the game with a flourish, ringing up the final Brighton batter for a K with the potential tying run on base.
“Zack pitched very well,” noted WHS head coach Frank DeMarco. “We needed a solid effort and he gave it to us.”
Winthrop scored its first run in the fourth on a base hit by Jeff Collignon and a triple by James Baxter and then erupted with a four-run rally in the fifth to erase a 3-1 Brighton lead. David Kirby opened the inning with a base hit, but it appeared he would die on the basepathjs when the next two Vikings made outs.
However, Mills kept the rally alive and helped his own cause with a double that rescued Kirby. Collignon came through with a hit to bring in Mills with the tying run. Ben Spinazzola then delivered a three bagger to bring around Collignon and Baxter stepped up to bang a double, his second extra-base hit of the game, to score Spinazzola with what would prove to be the game-winning tally.
This past Tuesday the Vikings took on Danvers, which is ranked in the top 10 in the state, and came out on the short end of an 8-1 decision. Winthrop received a good outing from starting pitcher Steve Goddard, who allowed just four earned runs in his five innings of work.
“Steve threw the ball well,” said DeMarco, whose team trailed by a slim 3-1 margin entering the fifth. “But we had trouble at the plate (the Vikings managed just three hits) against their pitcher, who was a submarine left-hander.
“We’re looking forward to making a run for the tourney,” added DeMarco. “This is a great group of kids who get along well with each other. They are the hardest-working group of baseball players I’ve ever coached and they will deserve to play in the post-season if we can win the games we need to in order to get there.”
WHS softball team wins two, qualifies for tourney
The Winthrop High softball team won two of its three games this week to improve to 10-4 on the season and qualify for the post-season state tournament.
The Lady Vikings edged Gloucester last Wednesday, 4-3, and blanked Salem two days later, 7-0.
Maura Lanza went the full seven inning route in the Gloucester contest, fanning 12 enemy batters and walking only one.
The contest took a strange twist in the fifth with Winthrop holding a 3-1 lead. Winthrop had runners on second and third when a Lady Viking hit a ball to centerfield. The runner on third tagged up and came home, but the Winthrop runner on second never tagged up and later was tagged out.
The Gloucester coached argued that it was a force play and the run should not count. The discussion went on and on and on for about 15 minutes, and eventually the ump ruled that the runner was out at second and the run should not count.
The long break seemed to take away the momentum for Lanza, who had been cruising along nicely to that point. Gloucester put up a couple of more runs on the board and had a lead-off double to place the tying run on base in the bottom of the seventh. However, Lanza maintained her control of the game and stranded the Gloucester runner.
In the 7-0 victory Friday evening under the lights at Salem, Lanza tossed the first four frames and then yielded to Taylor Thomas, who kept the shutout with three scoreless innings of her own.
The Lady Vikings dropped a 3-0 contest Monday to perennial NEC power Danvers. Although Winthrop played well enough to put a scare into the Lady Falcons, who were ranked third in the state coming into the game, it was not quite enough to come away with a “W.
Liana Ferullo made the defensive play of the game, running down a sure triple to dead centerfield with runners on first and second in the second inning. Liana also hit a ringing double to centerfield to lead off the second, but a pop up and two strikeouts ended Winthrop’s best scoring opportunity of the game.
“It’s hard to score on Danvers,” said WHS head coach Dave Guffey. “They have a lot of talent and they are well coached. We had our chances, but could not take advantage of them.”
Lanza went all seven frames, allowing just seven hits and two earned runs with four strikeouts and one base on balls.
The leading hitters at the three-quarters mark of the season for the Lady Vikings are Jenn Adamson, who is hitting .425; Michelle Lasala at .380; Olivia Grillo at .361; and Ferullo at . 301.
Lanza has tossed 85 innings and sports a record of 10-4 with 108 strikeouts and a sterling ERA of 0.99.
JV softball team beats Salem, 16-8
The Winthrop High junior varsity softball team won its second straight game of the season, defeating Salem, 16-8. Jess Martin and Maddy Fingaa’ provided most of the offense, while pitching duties were shared by Emma Carney, Taylor Impanada, Kaitlyne Carter, and Fingaa’.