Sports

Busy stretch catches up to St. Mary’s baseball team

St. Mary's Lee Pacheco drove in four runs Friday. (Item File Photo)

LYNN — A busy stretch of six games in seven days caught up to the St. Mary’s baseball team Tuesday night.

The Spartans couldn’t string together timely hits, failed to throw strikes consistently and made three costly fielding errors en route to an 8-3 non-conference loss to Malden Catholic at Fraser Field.

“We have to keep our focus,” St. Mary’s coach Derek Dana said. “We didn’t quite finish Monday’s game defensively and (Tuesday), again. We’ve had a lot of baseball over the past week. Our seniors have a few big things to take care of with graduation and things like that. We have to reset and get ourselves ready to go for the Clancy Tournament.”

Malden Catholic plated two runs in the top of the first inning, added three in the second and put things out of St. Mary’s reach with a 3-run rally in the sixth.

Aside from a run in the bottom of the first and two in the sixth, the Spartans bats were kept quiet.

Lucaas Dascoli laced a leadoff single and Joseph Ward walked to put runners on first and second for the Lancers in the top of the first. Dascoli and Ward came home on a St. Mary’s error, giving Malden Catholic a swift 2-0 lead. St. Mary’s got one back in the bottom half of the inning on Lee Pacheco’s (1-for-3, two RBI) sac-fly (scoring Kyle Ouellette).

Malden Catholic added three more in the top of the second, all with two outs. Josenel Perez walked, stole second and scored on a Spartans error. Ward hit a 2-run home run to right field, giving the Lancers a 5-1 lead.

“I found us all over the field, infield and outfield, doing some things that we don’t normally do,” Dana said. “A couple of those things showed up (Tuesday). We’ll talk about that and we’ll clean that up.”

Spartans reliever Austin Foglietta, who took the ball from starter Kyle Ouellette (1 1/3 innings, one earned run, three hits) held down the fort until running into trouble in the top of the sixth. Dan Marshall led the inning with a triple and pinch-runner Rory Carrier scored on Adam Braid’s RBI single. Dascoli added a RBI single and the Lancers pushed another run across via fielder’s choice to close their scoring.

Pacheco plated Jared Coppola (2-for-3, walk) with a RBI single in the bottom of the sixth. Lucas Rincon (1-for-1) raced home a wild pitch, closing the gap to 8-3.

“I like the way Jared’s swinging the bat,” Dana said. “Lee hit the ball on the button a couple times. It just wasn’t a great night all round.

“Lucas Rincon and Lucas Fritz both got their first varsity hits,” Dana said. “Terrence Moynihan made some plays in the outfield. He’s been finding his way into the lineup. Austin Foglietta came in, held things down for a while. Ethan Weisse gave us two good innings. I really liked the last inning. Kids are still getting opportunities to show what they can do.”

Lucas Fritz (1-for-1) singled with two outs in the bottom of the seventh but a Spartans rally wasn’t in store.

St. Mary’s has a few days of practice before hosting North Reading Friday (4) in the opening round of the Nipper Clancy Tournament.

“(The Clancy Tournament) is a great atmosphere because it prepares you for the state tournament in that you’re trying to win something,” Dana said. “It’s only a 2-day tournament but you want to win two games because it means you win the tournament. It kind of teaches you a lesson because in the state tournament you win or you go home.”

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