Murder Hornets Sting Millers, Lizards Leap Over Hustlers
Updated: Sep 20, 2022
Mike Dietlin delivers a hit Sunday morning at Herlihy Park against the Murder Hornets.
The Lizards beat the Hustlers in a highly competitive, well-played contest on Opening Day. Steve Ostrowski broke open a scoreless game with a 2-run single in the 4th. The Lizards plated two more runs on three hits, a walk, and a costly error and led 3-0.
The Hustlers threatened in the fifth, loading the bases on consecutive hits by John Dusenberry, Chris Scanlon, and Bob Mastorakis, but a 1-2-3 double play effectively ended the rally. Hustlers’ reserve, Aram Rubenstein-Gillus, followed with a two-out RBI single, but the Hustlers had squandered their best chance of the day. The defense by both teams was excellent throughout, with each team committing only one error.
Rick Fleurent pitched 4 scoreless innings and had an RBI single for the Lizards. John Malikowski K’d 2 of the 3 batters he faced, and Mark Caputo had a screaming double, scored a run, and pitched a scoreless 7th for the save. Steve Ostrowski was 3-3.
Hustlers’ starter, Ken Sloat, pitched four innings, giving up one earned run on three hits, while striking out four. Max Strubel came on in relief in the fifth, giving up one earned run on three hits, striking out two.
The Hustlers’ offense was led by Jerold Duquette (2-3), Chris Scanlon (2-2, HBP), Bob Mastorakis (2-3), and Aram Rubenstein-Gillus (2-2, RBI).
Murder Hornets 5
It was a beautiful last Sunday of Summer for the inaugural games of TNB50 Fall Ball as the Millers hosted the Murder Hornets at Herlihy Field.
Crafty veteran hurler Eddie Esposito and even craftier veteran, Pres Pieraccini kept the Hornets in check, allowing just 2 hits through three innings. Meanwhile, the Millers came out swinging.
The Millers loaded the bases with two outs in the first, but Hornets' ace, Colin Hosley bared down, getting a fly ball to end the threat.
A leadoff single by Mike Olkin and a a walk to Esposito to open the 2nd set the stage for the game's first run. Dennis Holmes reached on a throwing error, and "Pedal to the Metal" Esposito motored around third and scored. Millers 1, Hornets 0 after 2.
The Hornets scratched out a run in the 4th on four singles capped by an RBI one-bagger by Jim (Kruk) Fogarty.
The Millers responded with two more runs on three hits and a walk to extend their lead to 3-1 after four, and it looked like they were cruising...
But the Murder Hornets had other ideas. Fast forward to the fifth. Hits by Andy Klepacki, Rob Hyde, Fogarty, and an opposite field RBI single by Eric "Noodles" Bennett added up to a 4 run late explosion and a 5-3 lead.
In workman-like fashion, Hornets reliever, Greg Elbaum came on in the fifth, shutting the Millers down with 3 scoreless innings of work.
The game ended when TNB rookie, Mike Ringler made a spectacular diving stab in left to take a sure hit away from Pres Pieraccini and secure the victory.
Hornet Heroes were Colin Hosley (4 IP, 1 earned run, and 2-3 at the plate), Greg Elbaum 3 IP and 0 runs allowed, and hit machine, Jim (Kruk) Fogarty (3-3, 2 RBI). TNB rookies Tom Neilson and David Booth went 1-3 and played perfect defense.
Mike Dietlin and Stu Clark each collected two hits for the Millers.
Game photos courtesy of Stu Clark