Lizards Double-Up Hustlers, Millers Swat Murder Hornets, Playoff Race Heats Up
Updated: Oct 11, 2022
J.R. Ross delivers a single against the Millers Sunday at Mitchell Field.
The TNB 50+ Lizards improved to 4-0 with a 4-2 win over the severely undermanned Hustlers.
The Lizards took a 1-0 lead in the first off of Hustlers ace, Jeff Whitehead when Micah Winston singled and scored on a wild pitch. Lizards ace, Rick Fleurent was brilliant, pitching 3 perfect innings, fanning 4, for the win.
The Lizards broke through with 3 big runs in the 3rd on an RBI groundout by Ron Totten, an RBI single by Mark Caputo and a sac fly by Jeff Cahill.
Morriss Partee relieved in the 4th and pitched 2 solid innings, only allowing an unearned run, and John Malikowski closed out a perfect 7th by fanning the final 2 batters for the save.
With the victory, the Lizards clinched a spot in the championship game in 3 weeks.
Game photos courtesy of Jeff Whitehead
Murder Hornets 9
It was a crisp, sunny, early October morning in Holyoke that that found the Millers looking for their first TNB Fall Ball win against the feisty 1-1-1 Murder Hornets.
Of course after both managers discussed how TNB Fall Ball has showcased some fundamentally sound baseball, all hell broke loose from the get go, which included an avalanche of errors, misplays, errant throws and balls lost in the sun too numerous to mention.
The Millers struck early and often in the first, scoring 4 runs, highlighted by a bases clearing, 2 RBI blast by Paul Iellamo.
Not to be outdone, the Murder Hornets struck back with 5 runs in their half of the first, capped by a 2 RBI, opposite field single by Noodles. But, wait there's more...
The Millers added another four spot in the 2nd courtesy of all sorts of gifts from the Hornets and the sun and three more runs in the 4th and one in the 5th to take a 12-6 lead.
While the Hornets plated three runs of their own in the 5th, capped by an RBI single by Jim "Kruk" Fogarty making it 11-9, and that's where the scoring fest ended as Tom "TC" Conway, who had pitched earlier in the game, came back in to shut the door for the Millers and close it out.
In the end the team that made the fewest miscues won this contest. The win for the Millers made the race for 2nd place in the league even tighter, making them only a half game behind the Hustlers and Hornets with two games remaining.
The Millers offense was powered by Mike "Deet" Dietlin (3-4, 2 R) and Matt Boulanger (3-4, 3 R). Tom Conway, Paul Iellamo, and Tony Maspo each collected two hits leading the charge. The Hornets were led by Jon "JR" Ross (2-3 , BB, 2 R), Colin Hosley (2 R, 2 RBI), Eric "Noodles" Bennett (3 RBI), and Jim "The Hit Machine" Fogarty (3-3, R, RBI).
Game photos courtesy of Stu Clark/Eddie Esposito