Sports

Classical, Malden pitchers toss no-hitters

COURTESY PHOTO
Malden’s Jared Martino was one of two pitchers this weekend to throw no-hitters — the other being Classical’s Jonathan Nicosia.

By STEVE KRAUSE

It was a weekend for no-hitters — one of them a dominating performance while the other one took a more circuitous route.

Classical’s Jonathan Nicosia, a sophomore, tossed a no-hitter Sunday in his first varsity start as the Rams remained undefeated with a 4-2 win at Beverly.

A day earlier, Malden’s Jared Martino, a junior, dominated Medford in a 2-0 victory in what was the first baseball game by two former Greater Boston League teams playing in their new league — the Northeastern Conference.

At Beverly, Nicosia struggled at times, walking seven. But he fanned six, too.

“Still, it’s a no-hitter,” said Classical (6-0) coach Mike Zukowski. “He started out by walking a few, but he settled down as the game wore on, and he fielded his position real well.”

Both Beverly runs were unearned.

As for offense, “we were able to take advantage of some of the mistakes (Beverly) made,” Zukowski said.

The Babe Ruth World Series kids from last summer factored heavily in the offense. Brett Bucklin was 2-for-3 with two RBI, and made a diving catch on a foul ball. Christian Burt had a hit and an RBI, knocking in A.J. Luciano, who had singled.

Others standing out for the Rams were Sean Devin (1-for-4, 2 runs), Matt Lauria (hit, RBI), Herb Newton (double) and Andrew Moccia (1-for-2, one run).

Saturday’s Malden-Medford game rekindled the go-to rivalry in most GBL sports, dating back to the late 1800s.

Martino simply jacked it up a few notches.

Martino, who smashed every Malden passing and scoring record standing this past fall as the Golden Tornado quarterback, showed why he is a high-end,two-sport recruit Saturday. The big Malden righty went the distance and went “pitcher’s dream” on his archrival, spinning a no-hitter with seven strikeouts in a 2-0 victory.

The win lifted Malden to 2-4 (2-3 NEC) while Medford dropped to 1-5 overall.

“I really did not think about it at all,” Martino said of the no-hit bid in the making all game. “I was just concentrating on hitting my spots and keeping the ball down and it was working. We got some excellent defense from our infield, too. That’s the best we looked all season. I am excited about our team and how we played today.”

Martino was backed by some stellar defense from his Malden teammates, most notably in the infield where senior Jimmy Pandolfo was super at second base as were sophomore Reid Kankel at shortstop and juniors Tylor West (3B) and Kevin Gilligan (1B) at the corners.

Malden junior Lou LoConte made the catch of day in right field in the Mustangs’ last at bat with  man on, tracking down a bomb off the bat of Jack Fargo that appeared to be over his head before the speedy 6-5 LoConte made the running catch.

LoConte also singled and scored Malden’s first run in the third inning. Sophomore Gabe Sanders‘ bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the Malden fifth made it a 2-0 game, scoring Kankel (2-for-4).

Malden is back to work today hosting another former GBL school Everett at Pine Banks (4). Medford is at Danvers.

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