BEVERLY, Mass. – Suffolk baseball trailed 12-6 heading into the top of the seventh and put together a five-run rally, but it would not be enough as Endicott held off the Rams' comeback to take the 12-11 non-conference decision Wednesday afternoon at North Field.
SCORE: Suffolk 11 | Endicott 12
RECORDS: Suffolk (13-8-1) | Endicott (11-8)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Suffolk sat down in order in the first and Endicott went to work in the bottom of the opening inning. After Tim Brigham made a diving grab in left off Tyler Zell's first throw of the day, the Gulls picked apart the blue-and-gold's defense, finding gaps all over the field to put the Rams in a two-run hole.
Endicott added a pair of runs in the second stanza to double its lead to 4-0.
The Rams rebounded in the first portion of the third. Doubles were the main ingredient to damage control with Steven Shamnoski leading things off with a knock for two bags. Connor Troio's single through the right side put the first Rams' run on the board before Rich Gilbride moved the designated hitter to third with a double of his own. An erratic pitch allowed Troio to score and slice the margin in half and an error during Blase Cormier's at bat made it a one-run game. Cormier took second on a ground out and Brigham traded places with the first baseman, as the left fielder knocked a double to left center to bring in the tying run.
Zell worked his first three-up, three-down inning, capped of a diving, highlight grab by Gilbride at short to keep fours on either side of the scoreboard after three.
Both teams remained quiet over the next few innings and the tied game remained until the Gulls juiced the bags in the home half of the sixth. Zell picked up two quick outs on the first two batters of the stanza and then things got interesting. A base-hit was followed by another base-knock, before a walk put all the ducks in the pond. Anthony Del Prete went to the mound to have a talk with his hurler. The senior stayed in to get and in the hopes of working out of the bases loaded, two-out jam, but Nickolas Perkins' had other things in mind as the Gulls' DH sent a no-doubt homer the 360-feet to right field and catapulted the hosts' advantage back to four, 8-4.
Suffolk made up some ground its next time at the dish as Cormier connected on a sac fly that plate Gilbride, who led off with a base-on-balls.
The three-run game did not stay long as the Gulls capitalized off three Rams' errors in the home half of the seventh and one in the eighth to score four runs and push the distance to seven, 12-5.
At first, the ground looked too much to make up, but a lead-off double by pinch hitter Tommy Shimchak followed by a RBI single up the middle by Nik San Antonio fueled the comeback. From there, Cormier and Brigham sandwiched singles around a fly out to load the bases then Rich Giandrea wore a pitch and Ben Isaak walked to cut the deficit to four. Endicott went to its bull pen in an attempt to stymie the Rams, but a productive ground out, wild pitch and a single up the middle by Troio all scored one run to make it a one-run game, 12-11, with the blue-and-gold at the top of its order for the second time in the inning.
With two outs and one runner on, Shimchak connected on a fly ball to left, but Brendan McDonald was there to make the grab, ending the Rams' rally and securing the 12-11 win for Endicott.
- Zell slipped to 0-2 on the year after allowing eight runs on 12 hits and two walks with three strikeouts.
- Casey Sullivan (1.1 IP, 3R, 1 ER, 1H, 1BB) and EJ Birch (1.0 IP, 1R, 0ER, 0H, 1BB, 2K) each in to deal relief for the Rams.
- Nicholas Borkwoski picked up the win for the Gulls, his first of the season, behind a one-run, one-hit, one-walk, two-strikeout, effort in 1.1 innings of relief.
- Will Bryant secured the save after shoving 0.2 innings of scoreless action with just one hit allowed.
- Joseph Brown started on the hill for Endicott and let up three earned runs on four hits and one walk with a pair of punchouts to his credit.
- Half of Suffolk's 12 hits were doubles with Gilbride's pair leading the way. The shortstop finished the day with a 2-for-3 effort at the dish with two runs scored and one walk.
- Cormier also had a multi-hit outing with two hits, one double, for two RBI, two runs scored. And one sac fly.
- Brigham and Troio each went 2-for-5 with one double apiece. The former brought in one run and scored one himself, while the latter produced two runs and scored once.
- Shamnoski's lone hit of the day was good for two bags. The catcher added one RBI and one run to the Rams' offense.
- Shimchak rounded out the Rams with doubles with one to go along with one run scored.
- Suffolk's six doubles are the most in a single-game this season and the most since the Rams connected for 12 in a 36-2 win over Anna Maria April 15, 2017.
- Gilbride hit a season and career-high two doubles.
- Shamnoski and Shimchak had the first double of his collegiate career.
Suffolk heads home for a Thursday, April 4 tilt against Nichols. Game time at East Boston Memorial Park is set for 4 p.m.