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Manni pitches Phillies past Wings in NSBL matchup

Phillies pitcher Andrew Manni throws early in the game against the Saugus Wings. Photo by joebrownphotos.com

SAUGUS — A great outing from starting pitcher Andrew Manni helped lift the North Shore Phillies to a 9-3 win over the Saugus Wings Tuesday at World Series Park.

Manni went five innings to earn the win, allowing just one hit with one walk and three strikeouts. 

“Andrew Manni has been great for us this year,” Phillies coach Dan Duval said. “He only let up one hit. He’s a very versatile guy, can play shortstop too and hits in the middle of the order for us.”

Kurtis White (1-for-3, HBP, RBI, three runs) got the Phillies started at the plate with a solo home run in the first inning. Dan Duval (1-for-2, walk) and John Razzino (2-for-4, walk) knocked in a pair of RBI each. Sean Devin (2-for-4, run), Jairo Valdez (1-for-4, run) and Lane Kompton (1-for-1) each had one RBI. 

Production at the plate with some old and new faces has been key for the Phillies this season.

“We’ve still got the big bats this year,” Dan Duval said. “Kurtis White has been killing the ball for us here. Kyle Devin is the meat of the order. We picked up a couple new guys too one of them being my brother Dylan and Kyle’s brother Sean Devin. They’re playing great.”

The Wings got some decent innings from a pair of young pitchers including Jason Casaletto but just two hits on the night wasn’t enough to keep pace with the Phillies.

“The pitching for us has been great all year,” Wings manager Mark Mitchell said. “But we’re having trouble at the plate. We’re squandering opportunities, leaving the bases loaded. We just haven’t been able to string together hits and it’s cost us this year.”

The Phillies got off to a fast start in this one thanks to White’s home run to right center to take a 1-0 lead. 

A pair of mistakes helped Saugus tie the game in the third. Victor DeMatteo reached on an error and Dawson Gaudet singled to put a pair of runners on. The next batter hit into a double play but moved Dematteo to third base and he later scored on a passed ball to tie the game at 1-1.

Sean Devin singled and Dan Duval walked in the fourth to get the Phillies started with two outs in the fourth. Valdez cashed in on the opportunity, lacing a single and plating Devin to put the Phillies back out front at 2-1.

From there the Phillies started to pile it on. Manni and Kyle Devin each singled to start the fifth and Sean Devin laced another single later in the inning to put the Phillies ahead 3-1. AJ Luciano drew a walk next to load the bases and Dan Duval laced a two-run single to stretch the lead to 5-1.

White was hit by a pitch to start the sixth and scored after an error on a single from Manni to give the Phillies a 6-1 lead.

The Phillies’ bats stayed alive into the seventh. A pair of singles and a walk loaded the bases. Kompton laced a RBI single and Razzino added a two-run single to give the Phillies a comfortable 9-1 lead.

Kompton pitched the last two innings but struggled to find the strike zone in the seventh with the Wings scoring a pair of runs on five walks to cut the lead to 9-3. A strikeout and a 1-6-3 double play eventually capped off the win for the Phillies.

With just a few weeks remaining in the season, every win is crucial for the Phillies (11-3) who travel to Kingston Wednesday (8).

“These games are key for us,” Duval said. “Now we have a big one with Kingston who is 17-1. Every game at this point is important. We take every game serious and we want to win every single one.”

The Wings (3-14) host Swampscottt (11-5) Wednesday (6).

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